Ken "Blacktop" Gentle

Alabama native Ken Gentle is a self-taught artist who began painting at an early age as a way of sharing his experiences of growing up in the South. His paintings typically start with a base of black tar on wood, tar paper or cardboard - hence the moniker "Blacktop."

“My paintings are a process of storytelling - invoking the past and spirit into people & environments. They are also about a way of life, about the struggle of life and the events that have changed our lives.” This highly acclaimed artist is in numerous galleries, businesses and private collections around the country and abroad.

Blacktop's work is in the permanent collections of Kennesaw State University and Appalachian State University.  His illustrations were recently featured in the newly released book Taylor Smart and the Chamber of Skulls, written by Mark Randolph Watters.