"The Official Louisiana State Painting"
Johnny O. Bell was born with an abundance of natural artistic ability. Following in the footsteps of his father
who applied his artistic talent to the trades of diesinker and toolmaker, Bell used his talents professionally
and became a renowned commercial artist. Raised in Michigan, the Westfield, Massachusetts, native was commissioned to do works of art throughout the United Sates, especially along the East Coast, throughout
the Western states and in the Southeastern quadrant of the United States.
Accomplished in layout and spatial design, Bell was highly sought by those in need of a professional letterer. During World Was II, his talents caught the attention of U.S. Army officials. He became the “artist in residence” in his company and was assigned all artistic responsibility including map drawing.
After his military discharge in 1943, Bell married Margaret Thompson and the couple settled in Kosciusko, Mississippi where he opened a sign company. In 1955, the Bells and their three children relocated to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where he founded Bell Advertising and Murals.
Although Bell experimented with many artistic techniques, he
is best known for his mural art. Beginning in
Because of his contribution to the state and in recognition of his exceptional artistic achievements, Johnny O. Bell was named Honorary State Artist Laureate by Governor Murphy J. “Mike” Foster two years after the completed work “Louisiana,” was declared the Official State Painting.
Email: Johnny O. Bell
About Johnny F. Bell