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Artist’s post-Katrina oil paintings depict the beauty, power of water | New Orleans Advocate


Having grown up in New Orleans, Adrian Deckbar was accustomed to water. She swam in the Florida Gulf on vacations and sat by the lake to watch sunsets in the summer. She ate food drawn from nearby fishing spots and enjoyed leisurely walks along the Mississippi River levee.

Water, to her, represented recreation and beauty and health. But then it became a threat.

Hurricane Katrina was the catalyst. The day before the storm hit, she and her husband left their Uptown house to travel to a cabin they owned in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas. They later returned to find her painting studio damaged and the family home in Lakeview covered in what she can only describe as “black slime.” The house owned by her in-laws in Chalmette also was destroyed.

She remembers watching footage on CNN while living in exile. On the screen, day after day, water filled the streets of her city.

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