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Making The Film

Queena Stovall: Life's Narrow Space

Film by Jack Ofield
Produced by Jack Ofield
Cinematographer: Jack Ofield
Sound: Harvey Koppel
Editing:
Copyright: Original 1983 Bowling Green/Jack Ofield
06 minutes, Color
Original format: Film: 16mm, 1983
More Film Facts
Home streaming only. For other permissions apply to Jack Ofield or to the distributor, New Pacific Productions - Distribution Services.



Queena Stovall of Lynchburg, VA died in 1980, age 92. She was an authentic, self-taught American folk painter who took the everyday life she knew in rural Virginia and rendered it in paint with insight and sophistication. In this sole film portrait of the artist, her work becomes more complex upon closer inspection as we see that not only are the lives of southern whites depicted with skill and affection, but those of neighboring blacks are portrayed with equal fidelity. She saw life in realistic terms; for example, Christmas wasn't cherubs and chubby-cheeked Santas, it was hog-killing on a cold winter's day. Her grandmother gave her the nickname “Queena” based on a child’s attempt to pronounce Serena. She married Jonathan Breckenridge “Brack” Stovall in 1908; they had five sons and four daughters. The Stovalls lived at various times in Lynchburg and nearby Elon.

Queena was an authentic, self-taught American folk painter who took the everyday life she knew in rural Virginia and rendered it in paint with insight and sophistication. In this sole film portrait of the artist, her work becomes more complex upon closer inspection as we see that not only are the lives of southern whites depicted with skill and affection, but those of neighboring blacks are portrayed with equal fidelity. She saw life in realistic terms; for example, Christmas wasn't cherubs and chubby-cheeked Santas, it was hog-killing on a cold winter's day.


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