Georgia county buys late folk artist’s Paradise Garden

By: Dorie Turner, Associated Press
ATLANTA (AP).- A northwest Georgia county has bought the garden where the late folk artist Howard Finster held court for tourists and art lovers from around the world. Chattooga County, where Paradise Garden has been based since Finster began building it in 1961, used donations and grant money to buy the small plot for $125,000, said Jordan Poole, executive director with the Paradise Garden Foundation. The foundation will continue to work on restoring the quirky garden, which was featured in a 1983 R.E.M. video. Finster, a bicycle repairman and preacher who turned to art to spread God’s word, has long been considered the grandfather of the American folk art movement. He filled the garden, located about 100 miles northwest of Atlanta, with primitive mosaics, sculptures and