For Jan Small, Dec. 12 was more than just the final day this century where the same number appears in the date three times in a row.
Wednesday marked the Fremont artist’s 75th birthday and she celebrated it to the fullest by having a party held at the NewPark Mall Cultural Corner.
“I am so excited,” she told Patch during her party. “It’s the best birthday I ever had.”
It was only a couple of years ago when Small realized that her birthday would be on 12/12/12 and when the coordinators of the Cultural Corner, an art gallery at the mall, asked if she can feature some of her artwork like she did last year, she requested to do it during the month of her birthday, so she could hold a birthday celebration, too.
“I love seeing everybody,” Small commented. “I have new friends and old friends and it’s just awesome!”
Small along with everyone in attendance kicked back and enjoyed themselves. Small went around the room, introducing friends and relatives to each other, her friend Rose Bolster sang and played songs on the guitar as everyone sang along and a slideshow was put on, showing pictures and newspaper clippings of Small from infancy to today.
In between time, guests and attendees alike went around and checked out some of her paintings that were on display. An adamant Christian painter, several of Small’s works feature themes of spirituality and American patriotism.
“I receive visions and a long time ago, God asked me to paint them,” she explained regarding her work. “So He gives me visions and I paint them and He gives me the understanding of them. I think it’s exciting to bring Jesus to the mall.”
Now at the age of 75, Small plans to continue painting. An ever-lasting passion of hers, she hopes to go the same way French painter Pierre-Auguste Renoir did; with a paint brush at hands.
Small's artwork will continue to be featured at the NewPark Mall Cultural Corner through Dec. 31. Click here for the art exhibit's hours, and to see more of Small’s artwork and visit www.jansmall.com.