One of an extended family of well known, and collected folk art carvers from rural Kentucky, Jim Lewis joined his brothers and cousins, including Junior Lewis and Tim Lewis. The work of Minnie Adkins, and the late Garland Adkins, highly regarded regional folk artists, inspired Jim Lewis to begin carving. He had worked as a heavy equipment operator before working exclusively on his art, working in basswood, as well as maple for his canes. We attended events including the sorghum festival and the annual “Day in the Country.” We purchased several of Jim Lewis’s canes and other sculptural work, including this early mermaid. Collectors of this genre of work recognize the importance of seminal work such as this mermaid. Early work, we feel is most inspired, most original. These pieces are signed and dated 1993 and 1994. His more recent work is sold at regional galleries. His work has been displayed ” nationally and internationally” including the Museum of American Folk Art and is sometimes available at the gallery at the Kentucky Folk Art Center in Morehead, Kentucky.