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Several years ago, I posted a reminiscence of Robert E. Smith, a unique character and “outsider artist” with an unmistakable painting style and a sensibility that was nearly impossible to categorize.

I didn’t know this at the time, but it turns out that my fellow Ozarks writers Leland and Crystal Payton had a much longer and closer relationship with him. They recently posted some thoughts about him on his birthday, on their website, HyperCommon. Here’s a link. They also posted a link to a profile of Smith that they published in 1993, which contains many of his insights and comments about his artwork. Here’s a link to that one.

May they continue to flourish, the outsiders, the uncategorizable, the eccentrics and the oddballs. What a drab world it would be without them!