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Graceland 50th Anniversary

Fifty years ago the King of Rock n’ Roll brought the palace that became – for him – a sanctuary from the demands of a very public life, and for devotees of American pop culture, a Mecca that grows only more famous with the passage of time. Graceland is one of the most visited homes in America, where legions of fans come to embrace the memories and the music of the undying rock legend Elvis Presley.

I grew up with Elvis’ great songs and movies; my older sister was a huge fan who played his records until she wore them out. I’ve grown to appreciate the energy and high spirits the “King contributed to what has become classic American culture. So, naturally, I was delighted when I got the opportunity to paint the official 50th Anniversary portrait of Graceland.

I set up my easel at Graceland on a crisp autumn morning when the stately home was particularly cozy and welcoming with smoke curling from the chimney and a golden light blazing in every window. I finished my sketchy Plein Air study in just a few hours, and then took Graceland, 50th Anniversary to my studio where I created an image that includes such finishing touches as a likeness of the “King” and once of his famous Cadillacs. After all, Graceland is a home like no other.

  • Thomas Kinkade has placed a total of five N’s in Graceland, 50th Anniversary as a continued tribute to his love for his wife, Nanette.
  • Thom has featured Elvis’ green 1958 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible in this painting. This car marks the entrance to Elvis’ famous automobile museum.
  • This painting commemorates the fiftieth anniversary of Elvis Presley’s purchase of Graceland in March of 1957. Thom has romanticized the perspective of Graceland, 50th Anniversary to have the view of the mansion visible from the open gates and up the historic circular driveway.
  • Graceland’s famous gates with their guitar motif were custom built by John Dillars, Jr. of Memphis Doors, and installed in 1957.
  • The Graceland Mansion sits atop a hill in the suburb of Whitehaven, Memphis. The city of Memphis comes alive each August as the annual Elvis Tribute Week is celebrated. The year 2007 will be the 30th Anniversary of Elvis Tribute Week. Tens of thousands of fans and the media from all around the world converge on Memphis to visit Graceland and enjoy a multitude of events based around the King of Rock ‘n Roll.
  • The Graceland Mansion opened to the public in 1982 and is visited by up to 700,000 visitors each year, second only in visitor numbers to the White House! The Elvis Presley Automobile Museum, located across the street from the Mansion on Elvis Presley Boulevard, opened in 1989. In there is the Pink Cadillac Elvis gave to his beloved mother Gladys and the Strutz Blackhawk – the last car Elvis drove.
Title Graceland 50th Anniversary
Published March 2007
Subject Location Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tennessee

Image Sizes

18" x 24"
25½" x 34"
30" x 40"

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