Florence Thomas, Ashe County

Florence Thomas Art School, Inc. is a non-profit art school made possible by the late Florence Thomas. She was a soft spoken farm woman and one of the greatest artist the High Country has ever seen…with many hundreds of paintings produced. She was born in Ashe County, North Carolina, in 1909 and lived nearby until her death on March 30, 2007.

Florence began her formal study in Pennsylvania at The Pennsylvania School of Design for Women. After her marriage to Paul Thomas in 1931 she continued her studies up and down the eastern seaboard from Maine to Florida and, at one point studying with Carolyn Wyeth from Chadd's Ford, Pa.    

Florence is known for her impressive style, no doubt from studying with Carolyn. In her lifetime, she captured the soul and the mystery, and ultimately the comfort of common things…farm animals, flowers, and landscapes. Her paintings convey a certain mood, vivid color, and warmth that draw the viewer into a sense of comfort and familiarity.

Upon her passing, Florence provided the means to establish a non-profit art school in Ashe County, thus continuing her legacy of providing quality instruction in the arts. Shortly thereafter, the first board of trustees purchased 10.3 acres along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Glendale Springs, North Carolina.

The Florence Thomas Art School provides workshops for artists, of all ages, to receive quality instruction in a variety of fine arts, master crafts and heritage crafts. The school also has a gallery where the public can tour and enjoy the works of art. Since 2008, Florence has also offered special educational programs and community outreach activities.

Florence Thomas Art School is located here in Downtown West Jefferson. Click HERE for a schedule of the classes they offer. While in West Jefferson be sure to enjoy all that the town has to offer. Make a day of it and come by A1 Mountain Realty and let the professionals staff of Ashe County Realtors, Ellen Phipps and Gwen Hoover help you with all your Ashe County NC Real Estate needs.

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