Well-known artist Beth Anderson, who lives in the equally well-known town of Round Top, Texas, painted this charming oil painting on canvas board. It depicts the "World's Smallest Catholic Church" in Warrenton, Fayette County, Texas, between Austin and Houston. (If you're wondering, the church is 12 by 16 feet and seats 20--barely.) Beth Anderson, a Texan with Florida roots, has made a specialty of painting slices of life in rural Texas, including historic buildings like this church. The style is appealingly spare, painted with blocks of color in the American folk art tradition. As a wonderful contrast, the wooden frame is painted gold and has ornate carvings, beaded inner trim, a linen liner and scalloped edges. The artist's signature "Anderson" is painted in red lower left. We understand that sadly Mrs. Anderson, now in her nineties, is no longer painting.
On the back of the painting Beth Anderson attached her business card, as she often has, and included hand written information:
The World's Smallest Catholic Church
B. Anderson © ...
The framed size is 9 inches by 11 inches; the painting itself measures 5 inches by 7 inches. It weighs 1 1/4 pounds and is in excellent condition, with a few flakes off the paint the only issue we could find. It has a hanging wire already installed on the back, but no dust paper, presumably so the written information would not be hidden. It's a gem of Texas art, just the right size to mix in a grouping or stand alone, eye-catching in its vibrant colors. Not everything is bigger in Texas...
+++Notice the three red dots painted on the lower right of the painting--Beth Anderson included three more dots after her signature on the reverse, also. No one knows what they mean and so far, Beth Anderson's not telling.
By: Linda Henrich
Photos By: Wayne Henrich