Florence Thomas Art School – West Jefferson NC

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, was probably the greatest artist with many hundreds of paintings the High Country has ever produced. Born in 1909 in Ashe County North Carolina, she lived nearby until her life ended peacefully on March 30, 2007, at age 98.

   Florence Young (Thomas) was a remarkable woman. She began her formal study of art in 1930, when she traveled to Pennsylvania to study at The Philadelphia School of Design for Women. In 1931 her studies were interrupted by illness and she returned home. Later that same year she married Paul Thomas and settled on a large farm located on the NC/VA border.

Florence is known for her impressionistic style, for twenty years Florence taught painting in the basement of her home. Offering the opportunity for instruction to others in the region was important to her.

Eventually, Florence retired from teaching and returned her focus, once again, to her own painting.  In her lifetime, she painted hundreds of paintings, capturing the soul and the mystery, and ultimately the comfort, of common things, farm animals, flowers, 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. 

In 2008, Florence’s dream was realized when the school held its first workshops. With continued growth and support, the spirit and lessons of her presence will continue to inspire students well into the future.

The mission of the Florence Art School is to provide resources for instruction, exhibition and experience in the fine arts and heritage crafts for Ashe County and the region.

Ashe County North Carolina is a small, rural Western North Carolina Mountain county that comprises approximately 427 acres. Much of the rugged land has been preserved, making Ashe County an area filled with scenic vistas and gorgeous secret hideaways. Here, the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway makes it way around the county, and the ancient New River snakes through the valleys, creating unforgettable landscapes and picturesque mountain cabins and building sites.

A1 Mountain Realty is located right down the street from the Florence Thomas Art School.  At A1 Mountain Realty, we are committed to helping our clients find Western North Carolina Mountain Property for sale that they only dreamed of owning. Let us help you find Western North Carolina Mountain Property; browse our Ashe County Real Estate listings. Browse our listings from our website (www.a1mountainrealty.com) or do a High Country MLS search for any High Country Real Estate.