1940 ARMISTICE DAY STORM by Les Kouba
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“1940 ARMISTICE DAY STORM” by Les Kouba is a print published in 1990 in of 3000. The image size is 16″ X 21”. It is pencil signed and numbered by the artist. A Collector’s Edition of 300 also exists with the words ‘Collector’s Edition’ printed in gold in place of the pencil number.
This is one of his ‘great’ all-time prints. Included with the print is a copy of the story connected with this great storm which took the lives of many hunters. The story could be framed and displayed with the print.
It was called the ‘Storm of the Century’. This painting by Les is a nostalgic and bittersweet memory of a way of life as he knew it. This was a scene one would find on almost any midwest farm in the 1940’s. In this painting, Les recalls these golden memories of the way it was, and pays tribute to the spirit and integrity of a dedicated and self-reliant people and their courageous heritage. “This painting is their memorial”.
Two pictures show Page 1. & 2. of a magazine article featuring this great storm.
Another picture shows Les Kouba painting another famous print “In Shelter”.
ABOUT THE ARTIST – Click on any picture to enlarge it
Les was a good man. He was talented and strived hard to create exceptional paintings. He had an extraordinary sense of humor and was really fun to work with and be around. He was also a kind and generous man. As I wrote in one of his epitaphs, “Above all, Kouba was an artist whose first hand knowledge of the images he painted made his art both relatable and believable”.
He did a lot of homework studying and photographing his subject matter and how they lived and survived in their environment. This is why they so often tell a story or provide a nostalgic memory.
I always like the words he used describing his painting, “By the Country Store”. You have perhaps read this before but the following is ‘Classic Kouba’:
In 1939, Les Kouba was working his way around America painting Coca-Cola signs. Although it was always his final goal to become a wildlife painter.
“I had to pay my dues and obtain basic training wherever I could. The Country Store was a headquarters for the whole community; often including a post-office, a bus depot and a center of activity for the whole community. Just as we now have Classic Coca-Cola, this is a painting in remembrance of vintage Classic America. We share a lament for what we as a people have lost from these earlier times, but as long as the wild geese fly overhead, we can share their faith and hope for the future” .
Through his art, people remember great times and places, and the way it was, before the fast pace and loss of values we frequently experience in present times.