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b. 1950

Curtis Arnett was born in Greenville, Florida in 1950 and moved to Ft. Pierce with his parents in 1955. He is the 2nd youngest Highwaymen behind Johnny Daniels. As Arnett explains it, he believes he was very lucky to have been introduced into the group. His back door in his childhood home met Roy McLendon’s back door. Across the street was Harold Newton. 

He sold his first painting the day he turned 16 and got his driver’s license. He brought 2 or 3 paintings with him, and sold one to a gentleman who owned a motel off of US1. It was a small 12x16” it sold for $6, for which Arnett was overjoyed to have proven himself on his first day out. He currently resides in North Florida and is an active member of the Highwaymen community. He attends shows and hosts art classes throughout the year, check our events to see where he will be next.


While he knew all the members of the group, he was closest to Roy McLendon, Hezekiah Baker, and Livingston Roberts. Arnett considers himself largely self taught, with his primary instruction for painting he accredits to books. This often appears through his distinct detailed work, differing from many of the other artists stylistically. He uses a palette knife far less than many of the others, relying on perspective and layered colors of paint.

During the years of weak demand, Arnett worked at St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant for 28 years. Once fame began to surround the group again, he committed to painting full time, though he never stopped painting.

Biographies are adapted from those on, one of the earliest informative websites on the Florida Highwaymen. Since the site is no longer active, we have provided them here.

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