hill country love affair: interpretations of a texas heartland

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As the exhibition title implies, A Hill Country Love Affair is an art exhibition celebrating the glories of the Texas Hill Country. Here for the viewing is a fine selection vintage and contemporary paintings by over thirty Texas artists, all of which feature this beloved sector of the state in one form or fashion. The works shown have been executed by their respective artists over a period of roughly eighty-five years. It is a lovely assemblage of artworks featuring the grand mix of wildflowers, wildlife, rivers, lakes and vistas which characterize in the Hill Country environs. A visit is certain to bring pleasant viewing for all who attend, as this is a worthy exhibition simply based on the beauty of the works alone.

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  • Hill Country Love Affair: Interpretations of a Texas HeartlandW i l l i a m R e a v e s F i n e a R t O c t O b e R 1 8 n O v e m b e R 1 6 , 2 0 1 3

    P L e A s I n g H I L L C o u n T r y V I e w s b y o V e r 3 0 T e x A s A r T I s T s , s P A n n I n g 8 5 y e A r s

    Randy bacOn maRy baxteR JOy caRRingtOn emma RichaRdsOn cheRRy maRgie cRisp Keith davis Ruth duncan

    santa duRan JOn Flaming henRi gadbOis RObeRt haRRisOn alexandeR hOgue caRl hOppe lee JamisOn

    lauRa leWis William mOntgOmeRy ancel nunn geORge demOnt Otis nOe peRez haROld ROney pORFiRiO salinas

    JeRi salteR William slaughteR debbie stevens bOb stuth-Wade ROlla taylOR RObeRt WOOd amOng OtheRs

  • hill cOuntRy lOve aFFaiR:InTerPreTATIons of A TexAs HeArTLAnd

    OctOber 18 NOvember 16, 2013

    Opening Reception: Saturday, October 26, 20135 - 8pm

    noe perez, Evening Colors, 2013

  • as the exhibition title implies, a hill country love affair is an art

    exhibition celebrating the glories of the texas hill country. here for the

    viewing is a fine selection vintage and contemporary paintings by over

    thirty texas artists, all of which feature this beloved sector of the state

    in one form or fashion. the works shown have been executed by their

    respective artists over a period of roughly eighty-five years. it is a lovely

    assemblage of artworks featuring the grand mix of wildflowers, wildlife,

    rivers, lakes and vistas which characterize in the hill country environs.

    a visit is certain to bring pleasant viewing for all who attend, as this is a

    worthy exhibition simply based on the beauty of the works alone.

    however, beyond being merely a collection of pretty paintings, this

    exhibition underscores that most fundamental quality of true texas art

    - a profound sense of place. it has been noted that the best of texas

    paintings marvel us because they connect to the archetypical spirit and

    instinctive nature of place which looms quietly (and sometimes not-so-

    quietly) within the collective consciousness of all texans. perhaps no

    other spot within the bounds of the great state is more evocative of

    genuine texas place than the texas hill country, and as the paintings

    on the walls attest, the region has beckoned to texas painters since art

    first blossomed in the state. indeed, texas artists have been engaged in

    a mad love affair with the texas hill country since the very beginning,

    and the masterworks in art which have resulted from their enduring

    romance are at least part of the reason that this rugged texas heartland

    is revered today as one of the states most identifiable environmental

    treasures.

    starting with the likes of hermann lungkwitz or Friedrich Richard petri,

    notables among a first wave of immigrant artists settling in central

    devotion to Place: Texas Artists and the Texas Hill Countrytexas in the 1850s, texas painters have been inclined to give romantic

    interpretations to the lofty hills and rocky riverbeds endemic to the area.

    the twentieth century ensued with impressionist painters such as the

    Onderdonks, notably Robert and Julian, and papa Jos arpa achieving

    popular acclaim by virtue of their stunning canvases of verdant texas hills

    and scrubby south texas countryside that surrounded their san antonio

    homes. their painterly output, coupled with their notable prowess as

    art teachers, helped to inspire a popular movement of bluebonnet

    painters and set dozens of would-be protges scouring about the

    texas hills in search of flower-covered vistas to paint.

    by the end of the Roaring twenties, texas and san antonio had evolved

    as the epicenter of the arts for the south and southwest. san antonios

    energetic art league, underwritten by its patron-in-chief, edgar b.

    davis, boldly offered a heralded national painting competition which

    encouraged both texas painters, as well as american counterparts from

    other states, to capture farming, ranching and other scenic landscape of

    the texas hill country and its adjacent territories. several of the artists

    who actively participated in these san antonio competitive exhibitions,

    as these events were formally titled, are shown in this particular

    exhibition, including emma Richardson cherry, alexander hogue, peter

    hohnstedt, eloise polk mcgill, gilbert neumann, harold Roney, Rolla

    taylor and others. Other notable exhibitors include Oscar e. berninghaus,

    adrian bewer dawson dawson-Watson, W. herbert dunton, edward

    g. eisenlohr, Frank tenney Johnson, audley dean nicols, and ella K.

    mewhinney.

    the 30s and 40s introduced yet another wave of hill-country painters

    onto the texas scene. Foremost among these were Robert Wood and

  • porfirio salinas, and strong examples of their works are found here

    as well. these artists extended the landscape traditions started by

    Onderdonk, arpa and others, turning out exquisite canvases populated

    with their own fields of flowers, dusty roads, spreading live oaks and

    blooming cacti. their works resonated with texans of the era and found

    homes among the most prominent of lone star families.

    the allure of the texas hills did not escape the attention of the artists/

    instructors of the newly formed university of texas art department either.

    these professors, along with a bevy of talented students, sketched and

    painted the austin countryside prolifically, albeit with more abstracted,

    avant-garde style then their san antonio-based contemporaries. in this

    show, examples by constance Forsyth, William lester and everett spruce

    speak to their affinity for the hard-scrabble farms and rocky streams

    which dotted the vicinity.

    Returning to studios after the war, salinas and other texas painters

    continued to pursue their fascination with hill country subject matter,

    painting wonderful examples throughout the middle and latter scores of

    the twentieth century. Others, such as William slaughter followed their

    lead. One of the grand artists to emerge in texas after the war was ancel

    nunn, whose painting here of the german-engineered sisterdale school

    house offers a sensitive tribute to the elegant legacy of indigenous

    structures which stand as monuments in time in these texas hills.

    texas painters of the present century have been likewise smitten by this

    storied landscape, finding new and inventive ways to paint and preserve

    the timeless qualities of the texas hill country. artists such as mary

    baxter, noe perez, Robert harrison, lee Jamison and laura lewis lend

    their respective forms of impressionism to this classic subject matter.

    Randy bacon, bob stuth-Wade and debbie stevens use measured, yet

    strong brushwork and careful overlay of paint to capture the unique

    light and texture of the land they paint. artists such as Jeri salter, erik

    sprohge and hunter george bring hill country settings to life through

    exquisite works on paper, while Jon Flaming and Keith davis prefer more

    whimsical, colorful abstractions (and in davis casefound objects and

    carved wood) to convey the distinctive qualities of the vicinity.

    and so on it goes. a long and continuous line of texas painters inspired

    by this glorious place, moved to capture its beauties and character in

    paint. the paintings here constitute a tribute to both subject and artists,

    and attest to the instinctive draw which this ground has held for texas

    painters over time. through a hill country love affair we invite you

    to experience your own personal journey to this special texas place.

    We have little doubt youll enjoy it, and that you will concur with us in

    affirming: long live texas, long live texas art, and god bless the texas hills!

    Bill ReavesPresident, William Reaves Fine Art

  • hill cOuntRy lOve aFFaiR: INterpretatIONs Of a texas HeartlaNdOctober 18 - november 16, 2013

    Artist Title of work date Mediumdimensions (inches)

    1 randy bacon Fort McKavett #1 2013 oil on canvas 18 x 24

    2 randy bacon Fort McKavett #2 2013 oil on canvas 18 x 24

    3 randy bacon San Saba River at the Presidio 2013 oil on canvas 18 x 24

    4 randy bacon Llano River 2013 oil on canvas 18 x 24

    5 randy bacon Pecans (Menard) 2013 oil on canvas 10 x 14

    6 mary baxter Cattle Near Quihi 2013 oil on canvas 30 x 42

    7 mary baxter Ducks in the Rain 2013 oil on canvas 30 x 24

    8 mary baxter Two Cattle Egrets on a Rocky Point 2013 oil on canvas 30 x 36

    9 Joy carrington Basket of Cactus no date oil on canvas 24 x 18

    10 Joy carrington Hill Country Bluebonnets no date oil on board 10 x 16

    11 Joy carrington Trees & Lake no date oil on canvas 24 x 36

    12emma richardson cherry

    Blue Bonnets & Indian Blankets no date oil on board 17 x 11

    13 margie crisp Righteous 2013 egg tempera on panel, 24k gold, water gilded 8 x 7

    14 margie crisp Endangered Species Icon: Black-capped Vireo 2013 egg tempera on panel, 24k gold, oil gilded 11 x 14

    15 Keith davis Woodpeckers and Cactus 2013 acrylic on wood 26 x 17 x 9

    16 Keith davis A Window on Texas: Spring in the Hill Country 2013 acrylic on wood 36 x 31 x 8

    17 Keith davis A Window on Texas: Crows in the Kitchen 2013 acrylic on wood 29 x 26 x 9

    18 Keith davis A Window on Texas: Evening Song 2013 acrylic on wood 26 x 26 x 6

    19 Keith davis Rabbit and Cactus 2010-13