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 Was this how gospel chalk art was born?

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Kerry Kistler

Posts : 149
Join date : 2010-01-12

PostSubject: Was this how gospel chalk art was born?   Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:20 pm

It may have jumped quickly from the sanctuary to vaudeville, to the Chautauqua Circuit and beyond, but Chalk Talk's roots can be traced to the Methodist church - and a singular individual - Mr. Frank Beard (1842-1905). Here is a brief reflection on how it happened (excerpted from a newspaper interview in 1895):

"There is no man in the United States who can give forth ideas in this manner as he can. He is, you know, the originator of the chalk talk, and there is hardly a town in the United States in which he has not given this sort of a lecture, standing on the platform with a roll of paper stretched on an easel before him, and with a half-dozen colored crayons in his hand. He carries his audiences [away] with him while he draws pictures illustrating the philosophy, fun and satire which he throws at them in solid chunks. There are today a score or more of this kind of entertainers in the United States. Frank Beard, however, was the author of the business..."

Read more about it in Frank's own words at this link:


From these humble beginnings, two branches were formed. First, the chalk talker, who performed and entertained using humorous "lightning cartoons stunts" in (mostly) secular venues. Second, the gospel chalk artist, who (typically) drew scenic landscapes or Bible scenes in ministry settings. Certainly, there was cross-over at times but the second group owes a debt of gratitude to the first - and its father, Frank Beard. Three cheers for Frank!


www.ChalkIllustrated.com | www.GoldenChalkClassics.blogspot.com | www.ChalkedAndAmazed.com

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