Have you ever heard of the artist Walter Anderson?  I hadn’t, until I went to Ocean Springs, MS.  He spent his whole life there, and was a prolific painter.  His subjects were almost always the life and nature of the Gulf Coast.  He was quite eccentric and a recluse.  While he had a family he rarely lived with them, as he spent weeks at a time out on Deer Island, camping and painting.  I read a book written by his wife and she obviously adored him, but he really did not take care of her or their children – he only cared about his painting.  He was born in 1903 and died in 1965.  In 1934 he created a series of murals for the WPA, which are now in the museum.  In 1951 he created the decorations on the walls of the Community Center, which is next to the Museum.  A volunteer I talked with said she remembered coming to dances there when she was young, and the walls were not protected at all – there was smoking, and they leaned against them.  Today this priceless art is protected.