An Art Sale that Beats Any Gallery

I’d like to invite you all to an art sale at my home, date and time to be announced.

I won’t be auctioning off any Rembrandts or Picassos for good reason: I do not own any.

What I will offer you is some of the best artwork produced by my grandchildren. It’s time to diminish the volume they have gifted me over the past 13 years and let others enjoy their talents.

Besides, there seems to be no end to the production. You’ll find them with crayons in church and just about every other place where tedium is apt to set. Their coloring books and drawings are the perfect panacea for quiet time and a blessing in disguise for a pastor giving his homily.

I like the one my 3-year-old just did with the sun shining over what looks like a boat and water. Perhaps she had this inspiration from the recent junket we just did in Disneyworld.

Oh, and catch the Disney characters my 9-year-old just sketched. He’s got a real flare for art and has nowhere else to hang his work. So that’s where grandparents come in. There’s always room on Grammy’s refrigerator.

It does get rather tricky at times when six of them give you their artwork. To whom do you cater? Hang one and not the others might draw some resentment.

‘I won’t be auctioning off any Rembrandts or Picassos for good reason: I do not own any.’

And don’t think they do not check upon each visit. The 5-year-old will gallop right to the refrigerator and hers better be showcased. To heck with her brothers.

I remember when my own children were growing up. Their crayons were like art tools. Sometimes, they even practiced on the walls of their bedrooms. I entertained the thought of painting the room black but red was the closest I got with a color code.

And then along came the paints. When they tired of painting a picture, they painted themselves. There was more dye featured on their hands and faces than paper products.

You would expect they’d ace an art class in school. Oh no. One of them brought home a disturbing grade. Much as he enjoyed art at home, not in school.

“Too boring,” he confessed one day. “Who wants to be an artist?”

Tell that to a Van Gogh or any other mega-talent like Michelangelo. I’m sure there had to be a time in their storied lives when they tired of art or wished they had pursued another vocation. When the inspiration dissipates, so does the desire and productivity.

My favorite day trip is to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. I can spend a week there studying the classic artists. It’s a treasure trove waiting to be discovered.

I took a grandchild there one day and stood guard while he pawed some of the sculptures, fearful of an accident.

“How come that woman isn’t wearing any clothes?” she asked me one day, eyeing a Grecian goddess.

“Maybe it was too hot when she posed. Perhaps she didn’t have an outfit. The human body is a work of art,” I tried explaining.

During their younger days, they used to ramble through my summer camp—naked. They thought they were doing the art world a favor.

Much as I’m into photography and enjoy displaying my pictures, it’s not to say I do not enjoy good art. I have a wonderful bucolic scene of nature given to me by an artist in exchange for some candid shots.

An artist friend of mine is one of the top abstract artists around. He, too, gifted me some of his work. If you ever saw his studio, you would understand why. It’s filled to the rafters and he needs to make room for new material to store. I appreciate the man’s generosity. Because he’s a friend, I display his artwork with pride.

Probably in the same vein as my grandkids. I want them to feel honored, cherished, motivated. Should one of them develop into a Renoir, I want to brag about it to my angel friends in heaven.

Sometimes, I have houseguests who grow tedious when I try to show them these prizes. They turn the other way and go straight for the wine.

“Look at that sunset,” I’ll boast. “Imagine a 7-year-old with that kind of stroke?”

“Where’s the onion dip?” they’ll ask. “I’ll check it out when we’re leaving.”

I recall once painting a picture by the numbers. True story. It was a farm scene and you filled in the colors with the corresponding paint. Came out swell, should I brag.

My mother liked it so much she hung it in the basement for the mice to see.

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