The following review ran in the June 25, 2012, edition of Dallas Art News. SMU's Meadows Museum hosts two exhibits of Texas and Southwest art through August 19, 2012.
June 27, 2012
By Melanie O'Halloran
In two current and complementary exhibits: The Collection of Calloway and Jerry Bywaters Cochran: In Honor of a Lone Star Legend and The Frances Golden Ware Gift: Landscapes of the Southwest, The Meadows Museum celebrates recent gifts to SMU’s University Art Collection (which the Meadows oversees). These two exhibits offer an opportunity to view rarely seen examples of Texas and Southwest art, and in addition to adding depth to the Collection, they are nationally relevant whilst at the same time being so locally and personally pertinent to the families, the University and the wider Texan community.
The Frances Golden Ware gift was presented to SMU by her children to honor the late Frances Golden Ware, an SMU alumna whose family have featured strongly in University history since it’s founding – as teachers, dean, and board members. The collection of seven paintings of scenes from around Texas and the Southwest were collected by Mrs. Ware’s parents during visits with the various artists.
Bert Greer Phillips work Cottonwoods Oil, 1935 is characteristic of the paintings produced by Phillips in Taos New Mexico. Phillips and his friend, Ernest Blumenstein, founded the Taos Art Colony when, having set out on a painting trip west and to Mexico, their wagon broke down near Taos and they decided to stay and paint the area. The work is filled with the warm light of a south-western summer day – imbued with pinks and gold. The washed out pale blue sky give a sense of space and airiness whilst the golden light catching on the trees is reminiscent of the earlier en plein air European movement. The thick oil paint applied in small dabs is deeply resonant of the European impressionism.
In contrast to this warm, open work is Olin Herman Travis’s piece Untitled (White River Arkansas), 1930, which is less painterly and utilizes a far more muted palate. Travis, founder of the Dallas Art Institute, and the Arkansas based Travis Ozarks Summer Art School, beautifully captures the mysterious blue and purples of the distant Ozark Mountain Range from the White River Valley....