Katherine Gianaclis

Life and Work

Myth and Two Murals






I remember helping my mother paint her large murals. Sometimes it was in her studio at home and sometimes at a big warehouse. I remember one warehouse we worked at, me and my brother would run among the boxes and ride along on the square cargo dolly.


When we got tired we would head back over to my mother and ask her if we could help. She could always use the help. There was always some space to fill in with a single color. We were good enough at coloring books so we were good enough to be artist’s apprentices.


My mother painted many murals. I can’t remember the ones I worked on. It was too long ago. We’re searching for prints of some of her other murals. We have some snapshots of some, but no detailed images. If anybody knows any of the entertainment directors from Vegas of yore, let me know. They might have some photographs stashed away somewhere.


There is a mystery associated with Katherine Gianaclis’s art, too. Two of her grandest works, gracing both the library and lunchroom, disappeared from Doris Hancock Elementary School without a trace. A few years ago one of the teachers who was teaching there while I attended called me on the phone. She took the project of finding the missing paintings as an assignment. I wonder if Mrs. Davis ever stumbled upon anything in her sleuths. If so, I haven’t heard from her.


These paintings were large oils on canvas, roughly 3 feet by six feet. The first the pictorial tale of Christopher Columbus through which she does not so much grasp the truth as the myth. Isabella, Columbus and two sea-monsters in a sea that perhaps someday ends.


The other is a bizarre one of an oceanside whose sky is littered with hot air balloons of myriad shapes and sizes, a surreal masterwork. Strange inhabitants are in each one. And over there, a flying saucer, hovering. This is a prized painting and any information you get about it will go to Mrs. Davis, care of…



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This entry was posted on August 1, 2012 by in Comments from the final son. and tagged , , , .
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