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Just curious about the history of some of these paintings I see in some of the thrift shops.  Some appear to almost be done by machine but I’m told that actual artists were on the other end painting them.  Some are difficult to find references for but a few seem to be real.  Here is one that looked pretty good with an illegible signature.  Any ideas? The last one is one I purchased because I liked it but I know nothing about the artis.

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Hi Timothy, I think the name your looking for is "Highwaymen Paintings"? Most of these were done by Black American Artists in Florida in the 1940's to the 1960's. Some are going pretty high in price nowadays too! I wanted to purchase one a couple years ago, but the price was too steep for me at a Flea Market in TN.!

In any case, these are mostly considered "Folk Art" and If I can find it, I think I have a link for you, Hang on, have to rummage through my bookmarks!

PS. They are lovely - I like all of them! :)

Oh I’m quite familiar with the Highwaymen paintings but the ones I seem to see now are from a period a bit later than they are and I got the idea from someone that they were sold out of a motel room and the cost was proportional to the size of the piece you wanted.  Some were even abstracts, some were impasto where the paint was dimensional, but frequently they were stylized and more often than not, a search for the artist would come up empty handed.

Ahh, I see what you mean now, Sorry. I'd agree with Molly on the "Starving Artists" thing. I remember going to a fancy hotel in our area in Detroit, back in the 1980's. The place was FILLED with paintings everywhere, and a "sofa sized" piece was around $25. The advertisers called it a "Starving Artist's show" I guess we were to believe these were individual artists. ( Not quite right eh Molly?, LOL) From what I understand they did the same thing on Cruise ships, and etc. But I think they are done by HUMAN hands, at least, so perhaps your onto something?

I would hope that they do some day become like the "highwaymen" for sure. I like the same type of scenery as you do Timothy, in particular I'm a sucker for Florida landscapes. I like your painting too Molly! Yours reminds me of the European painters that still line the streets of Paris on Weekends. I was lucky enough to go a few years ago, but I didn't see anything I couldn't live without, unfortunately.

Like they always say "Buy what you love and enjoy what you have" I think that is the best practice!

 Well Tim, I can't seem to find my link, but I did spot quite a bit of info on Goggle. Try these links, you may find your artist(s) in on one of these sites. Good Luck, Keep us posted if you find out more! https://thefloridahighwaymen.com/product-category/highwaymen-painti...



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F. Thompson?  The first letter being a bit more ornate than the "T" in Thompson.

They are probably from the "Starving Artists".  I purchased one a while back thinking I stumbled upon something really special...and then I read up on it.

ARTISTIC INTERIORS, INC. - certified original oil paintings.


They are usually nice pictures and the frames and matting are good, but it seems the value is in the eye of the interested party.  Most of the names are made up, from what I gleaned.  Good Luck

Perfect example.  Some are quite nice.  But hey the thing is that might they have a surge in interest the way the highwaymen did?  AND after all, what gives with the production?  Are they mass produced down a production line or by a machine?  Odd thing is that I cant seem for find anyone that knows squat about this type of thing for answers.  And whats the deal with that stamp of authencity here?  Can that be traced somehow or is that just a gimmick?  I have 2 I bought from the same artist (at least the same signature) and one is of pheasants and another is a landscape scene - both fairly nice in technique and appearance and I paid very little for them but have to wonder if there is more to it with same signatures.


The way I understood it, there might be 3 or 4 painters that might specialize in a certain kind of effect, subject matter, style, etc. and that they would all add their individual skills to the paintings.  The name was fictitious, or at least was a combination of their names, the one that did the most work, and so on.  Being that they are all original oil paintings, they have to be one-of-a-kind, don't they?  I thought the one I found was quite interesting.  I actually posted on here.  I think one of the comments made mention of the shading/lighting being impossible in the real world, and another mentioning that all of the people had the same color hats...who knows.

These have been discussed  several times in the past 10 years or so. I've never heard the term "highwaymen", must be an Eastern term.  Out West this junk is called "Motel Art" which is where a lot of it is sold.  Or, "Starving Artists".  Art is painted by 4-6 different artists each one specializes in certain aspects, i.e., sky, clouds, mountains, trees, buildings, etc. Each piece takes about 10-15 minutes to paint. Some are sold w/o frames, or with-your choice. Values for new ptgs range from $19.95 to $79.95.  As pointed out the artist's name is made up and  phony.

FUNNY THING...on the Antiques Roadshow last night (Mon 8-13-18) somebody brought a piece of "Motel Art" to be appraised.Didn't fool anybody. Appraised value, "$10.00"! LOL


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