I’m listing a velvet art kit on ebay tomorrow and thought I’d do a little background research on velvet art painting. I thought that velvet painting was a relatively recent kitschy art form but I was wrong. Velvet painting is an ancient technique, and only took on a new popularity in the United States in the late 20th Century. According to Wikipedia, black velvet paintings originated in ancient Kashmir, the homeland of the fabric. These original paintings were generally religious and portrayed the icons of the Caucasus region which were painted by Russian Orthodox priests. Marco Polo and others introduced black velvet paintings to Western Europe, and some of these early works still hang in the Vatican Museums.
Painting on velvet is more difficult than it seems and while the kitschy mass-produced paintings we’re familiar with are the most commonly found, there are a number of artists worth noting that are known for their skill in the medium including:
- Edgar Leeteg has been called “the father of American black velvet kitsch”
- Daniel Marquez
- Bruce White