TODAY

TODAY   |  October 14, 2010

Eight-year-old girl dazzles art world

Move over, Georgia O’Keeffe! Masterpieces by 8-year-old prodigy Autumn de Forest have fetched nearly a total of $250,000. She tells TODAY’s Matt Lauer “I love to paint” and “I do it every day.”

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> youngest stars, 8 years old, almost 9, and compared to those like andy warhol and her paintings have sold for $20,000. her parents are here. good morning to all of you. you are a pistol. you are fun, you really are. i have three kids. everything they draw and paint, i think is a masterpiece. i'm not shoe so sure anymore. when did you realize there was something special here in her work?

>> she was in her late 5s. she came out to the garage.

>> her late 5s, like her late 40s.

>> i was staining wood , came out, asked if she could mess with the brush. i turned away and turned back, like a modern art masterpiece.

>> did everyone agree, like all parents did, look at what my daughter did. did others agree?

>> no. we didn't show. it we were scratching our head and thought it was an anomaly and interesting. the thing we noticed was she seemed to have passion and seemed to enjoy it.

>> autumn, is this your favorite thing to do? painting and drawing?

>> i do it everyday and try to do as much as i can.

>> what inspires you when you sit down with a canvas and some of these canvass are bigger than you are, what inspires you to paint?

>> you know what, i love to paint. you know --

>> just comes from the heart?

>> yeah. it just -- every single day, i'm like, i do this, and i'm trying to do it, maybe i can't do it. i do my best and i feel like i -- i just want -- i want to do it, i want to do it.

>> no formal training, is that correct?

>> no.

>> you didn't want to mess her up and have someone try and take her in another direction. what about the technical part of painting, how did she get so good at that?

>> well, actually, if you're asking about texture --

>> yes.

>> well, i kind of maybe viewed other words, but i take different texture, right out of the tube, which, when you mean, like you see a tube of paint.

>> right.

>> when it comes out very thick, and then -- and then i might mix it up with some water or something and i make it fast, when i say fast, very liquid. when i pour it out of the cup, it goes very fast, like water.

>> this one is called " autumn colors ," right?

>> yes.

>> if people look carefully, high schools a self portrait , right?

>> yes.

>> is this one of your favorite paintings?

>> yes, kind of, yeah.

>> mom and dad , let's slide over. autumn, tell me about this next painting.

>> this painting is actually called "barbie marilyn."

>> what inspiretude do this? andy warhol thing?

>> yes. andy warhol . he did marilyn monroe . wasn't a barbie but marilyn monroe . the real reason why i think he painted her is because at that time she was the best example as a sexy one.

>> let's move over , this is called "good night moon." you like that book?

>> yes. my mother used to read it to me when it was over.

>> i notice you don't say how long did something take, the product not the process. how long did this take?

>> well, you know, it really depends maybe how big it is, but i think it's definitely a few weeks, definitely -- yeah. not one week.

>> you are amazing. keep going, young lady , all right?

>> okay.

>> great to meet you. happy birthday almost the end of the month, mom and dad , thank you so much. keep it going.