Few artists have captured the essence of the natural world and the mystique of the Mississippi Gulf Coast as vividly and with such passion as Walter Inglis Anderson. Born in New Orleans in 1903, Anderson was taught the visual and literary arts from a young age. After attending university and traveling abroad, Anderson returned to Mississippi, where, until his death in 1965, he spent the majority of his life observing, drawing, and painting the flora and fauna of region.
Anderson found the undeveloped coastal region of Mississippi and its barrier islands, particularly Horn Island near Ocean Springs, to be ideal for close communion with nature. Part artist, part naturalist, he painted plants and animals with such anatomical precision that viewers are able to identify individual species within his work.
Anderson’s intricately detailed block prints, jewel tone watercolors, and ceramics documenting life along the coast—nearly 60 of which are exhibited in The Third Poetry—have become iconic representations of the region and are considered an integral part of the arts and crafts and American contemporary art movements.