Travel has always been a major part of my life, and whether alone or with my brothers, father, or friends, I have visited most major American cities. And to be sure, on all of these urban adventures, I found each explored destination infused with its own unique excitement and community character. None, however, have more a recognized cultural identity than the ribald and joyous confines of New Orleans.
In my latest painting, The Big Easy, revelers fill the streets as a Mardi Gras parade dances by the city’s famous balconies. The sound of jazz wafts through the crowds as beads are thrown, and concoctions of good cheer are hoisted in observance of Fat Tuesday. I smile, thinking of the thrill felt while being swept along in that wave of humanity. Look closely at the gathering and discover allusions to the Crescent City’s most notable and notorious denizens. From pirates to piano players, they are all there as part of the envisioned festival and adding to the cacophony of sound it might create. I hope you all enjoy this visit to one of my favorite places, and thank you for sharing my adventure in art.
- The Big Easy is the first Limited Edition Release in Zac Kinkade’s American Celebrations series, which pays tribute to some of the iconic traditions in America’s big cities.
- This painting features many tributes to the storied history of New Orleans, including the “Crescent City Café,” another nickname for the city.
- Can you find the saint dressed in Black and Gold, a nod to New Orleans’ football team?
- New Orleans is known for its place in music history. In addition to a Jazz Band, can you find Zac’s tribute to Louis Armstrong?
- Nods to other local legends are included in The Big Easy. Can you find the reference to the French Pirate Jean Lafitte?
- Voodoo is a part of New Orleans’ rich history. Do you see the voodoo priest in the crowd or the reference to Marie Laveau, one of the most famous voodoo shamans?
- New Orleans is known for its delicious Cajun cuisine, represented in this painting by the Cajun Crocodile Chef float.
- In a personal tribute to both his beloved dog Poe and one of his favorite artists George Rodrigue, Zac has also included a hidden “Blue Poe” in The Big Easy. Can you spot him?