Grassroots Art Center

Inez Marshall

Inez Marshall (deceased), born in Burr Oak, Kansas in 1907, started carving Kansas limestone in the late 1930s while recuperating from a broken back. She continued carving while working as an auto mechanic, truck driver, and traveling evangelist. Inez's sculptures include animals, politicians, scenes from small town life, a one-fifth size Model T Ford, and the wheel and battery of an uncompleted full-size Harley Davidson motorcycle.

Inez Marshall exhibited her work in her Continental Sculpture Hall at Portis until 1968 when it was moved to a hall in Abilene, but she was not happy there and returned to Portis. She had a stroke and lapsed into a coma in 1984; her sculptures and other assets were sold at an auction.

Inez Marshall said, "I get inspiration from a voice. When I first touch a piece of stone, I don't even know what I'm gonna create. I stew on it. I wait for the voice. I get inspired. Then it comes. The voice comes. There is an eagle in that rock, get it out!"

For 51 years, Marshall carved and painted native Kansas limestone into one-of-a-kind sculptures.

Nearly 100 works by this self-taught artist are on permanent display in the Marshall Gallery of the Grassroots Art Center in Lucas, Kansas.

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