Arie loves to paint memories of her childhood on the farm in the 20s and 30s western North Carolina. She started painting in the 1950s and is proficient in oils and watercolor. Over the years she had painted more than 500 paintings. She is a renowned artist in the Folk Art field.
Arie was born in 1921 and lives in Catawba County. This area heavily influenced and still influences her creativity. Arie knew that she wanted a chance to do something creative professionally, but artistic resources were still very limited in Catawba County in the 1950’s. Therefore, she enrolled in a portrait-tinting course through the mail and went to work hand-tinting portraits at a Portraits Photography Studio. By the mid-1950’s, Arie began to have pictures in her mind of things she wanted to paint although she had trouble getting her visions to look like she wanted them to on canvas. Around 1966, Arie was able to enroll in an art class through Catawba Valley Technical College. She recalls that the classes were not very instructional but did offer an opportunity for her work to be critiqued. These classes helped Arie to introduce more three dimensionalities to her work and better allowed her to achieve her goal of successfully putting the scenes in her head onto canvas.
In the mid 1970’s after cataract surgery restored her mother’s eyesight, Arie’s mother was able to begin expressing her lifelong creative impulse through painting. It was Arie who first presented her mother (Minnie Reinhardt) with the art supplies and instruction books she needed to become a full time painter. For the last twelve years of her life, Minnie painted everyday spending little time on anything else. During this period, Arie supported her mother’s career and growing fame and did no painting herself. Several years after her mother’s death, Arie returned to painting full force. Relying on memories of people and places from her past and as much creative license necessary, she sketches the scene onto her canvas, and then begins painting. Her paintings provide a sense of nostalgia for any viewer regardless of whether or not they are familiar with the scene. People from an older generation are reminded of the way things used to be in “the old days”, while younger generations learn what life was like before cell phones, computers, and video games.