The death of Thomas Kinkade did not signify an end to the popular artist’s signature paintings. A group of artists have taken up where the “Painter of Light” left off, releasing new paintings nearly identical to the ones done by Kinkade himself.
Thomas Kinkade Studios is comprised of artists who studied directly under Kinkade. By learning how to duplicate his signature techniques the students are now able to create original Kinkade-like artwork without resulting to reproduction.
The studio’s official website details Kinkade’s relationship with his studio and the importance of the artist’s legacy:
“Throughout his career, Thomas Kinkade developed and trained artists with the intent of continuing his legacy of ‘Sharing the Light’. He was involved in nurturing and sharing his passion for art with colleagues and the younger generations of artists in an effort to further perfect and nurture his techniques and styles and vision. This artistic mentor-ship of great artists passing the flame of knowledge and sharing skills is an age old tradition.”
An article by The Daily Mail writes that Thomas Kinkade created an empire with his painting style. His distinctive depictions of quaint cottages, soft landscapes, and serene fields resulted in a speculated revenue of nearly $100 million annually.
It is estimated that one in every 20 homes in America contains at least one piece of Kinkade artwork.
Thomas Kinkade’s personal archive contained “many unpublished original works”, but none of these have been made public. Thomas Kinkade Studios clearly states that the new artwork available for sale is the work of students. However, the new paintings still contain Thomas Kinkade’s trademark signature with the addition of a stamped studio mark beneath.
According to Buzzfeed, this may be causing some confusion among Kinkade collectors. Announcements on social media sites by the studio detailing new releases commonly receive comments from fans who clearly mistake the paintings as Kinkade’s work.
Kinkade passed away in April 2012 from an overdose of drugs and alcohol. The artist known as “the “Painter of Light” was 54 years old at the time of his death.