David Lynn Arnold has led a successful, if unusual, life. A high school dropout, he graduated from Arkansas State University with honors and awards for poetry and philosophy. Polio had stricken Arnold as a child, and he lost the use of his limbs. His devoted family exercised his arms and legs relentlessly, until he regained their use. After a successful career in manufacturing and construction, Arnold was stricken with post-polio syndrome, a major, chronic, and extremely painful and debilitating disease. In 2004, Arnold was forced to retire because of his disability. With the strong support of his wife and five children, Arnold has persevered.
My artwork has been classified by many as primitive, folk, outsider, and Americana. While my work has certain characteristics that fit each of these genres, it transcends categories. I call it "Second Chance Art" – I believe that art is all about "second chances." Art gives both the artist and the viewer the opportunity to re-visit scenes and to re-live special moments, anytime they choose. For me, "second chance" is an apt description, for I was given another "second chance" to learn to walk-this time with a cane. I have always appreciated the artistic skills of others. I have never had an art lesson. I bought an art book and taught myself to draw. The rest is artwork!