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BENJAMIN F. LONG FRESCOES IN WILKESBORO
St. Paul's Parish and the Cultural Arts Council of Wilkes partnered to bring two frescoes to Wilkes County. The two frescoes can be found in St. Paul's Episcopal Church, which is located on Cowles Street on the crest of the hill above the town. Unanimously, the International artist, Benjamin F. Long IV along with two assistant artists, Roger Nelson and, James Daniel, St. Paul's Episcopal Church, and the Cultural Arts Council of Wilkes agreed both frescoes should depict the Apostle Paul.
Long used the same fresco technique Michelangelo chose when he painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The technique involves mixing sand and lime with expensive pigments from clays and minerals imported from France and Italy to mix the colors used in the fresco. The pigments must be ground and the mixing of the sand and lime is labor intensive and a long process. The mix must not be too dry or too wet to ensure proper bonding. To correct a mistake, a whole days work must be cut out and started over.
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