Nancy Woodrow has been creating naive, primitive oil paintings for more than two decades. Early on, she was inspired by the folky style of Grandma Moses, the professional name of Anna Mary Robertson (1860-1961), a New England farmwife who started painting in her eighties, and who became an American icon.
Woodrow likes to tell a story of country life in her art, a life she sometimes wishes she had grown up in. It’s easy for her to get caught up in a painting and imagine herself living there. Old farmhouses, barns, ponds, cows, cats, sheep, gardens, quilts—anything to do with country life, arranged in varying and sundry order—are the essence of her paintings.
Woodrow prefers to paint on either masonite or sanded board because she can achieve finer details on the smooth surface. Her finishing touch is a three-step antiquing and age-crackling process. In addition, she prefers to use antique frames carefully selected to compliment the colors in the painting. She paints each work individually, one at a time, and sells only originals.
Woodrow lives in York County, Pennsylvania, an area rich with history because of the many 18th- and 19th-Century houses that dot the wooded hillsides and valleys. Her studio is open by appointment.
Artists appearing in the 20201 Directory of Traditional American Crafts have been selected, and the best of their handiwork has been photographed at Cedar Grove, an 18th Century house museum operated by the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Look for the Directory in our August 2021 issue.
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