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"Members Collect" at the Wilding Art Museum
Called "Members Collect," the spring exhibition at the Wildling Art Museum opening March 16, 2003 includes a group of historic paintings, prints, and drawings featuring America's wild creatures and wild places borrowed from the private collections of Museum members.
Approximately 22 works will be included in the exhibition, curated by Board member, Bruce McCurdy, a former member of the art faculty at UCSB. In his canvassing of members' collections, McCurdy has discovered some gems. The oldest works in the collection are hand-colored prints by George Catlin and Carl Bodmer, recording images of bison seen on the prairie in the 1830's and 1840's. Another early work is a signed etching by Thomas Moran of Half-Dome, Yosemite, dated 1887. This image is based on an earlier watercolor, now in the collection of the Smithsonian. (left: Roi Partridge (1888-1984), Willow Pool #2, 1923, etching, Lent by Susan and Andy Lentz)
The largest painting, Edgar Payne's four-foot square canvas, "Sierra Summer," is being lent to the Museum from the Lindsay Art Association and Lindsay Cultural Arts Council where one of the Wildling Museum members is an officer. Another southern California Impressionist, Elmer Wachtel, will be represented by an oil, "Alpine Lake."
Some of the artists whose works are included in the exhibition, such as John Gamble, Lockwood de Forest, Clarence Hinkle John Gorham, and Douglas Shively, were active in the Santa Barbara area and painted Santa Barbara subjects. Others, such as J. W. Rix, Fremont Ellis, Mary DeNeale Morgan, Thomas Hart Benton, and Maynard Dixon, achieved their reputations elsewhere in the country.
The exhibition includes two very beautiful etchings by Roi Partridge, a consummate print-maker, who taught for many years at Mills College, and was the founder of the art gallery there.
An opening reception, honoring the collectors who have lent their treasures to the Museum for this exhibition, will be held March 16, 3-5 p.m. A short concert of American music will be presented by the new Family School Performing Chorus at 3:30 p.m. The public is invited to both events.
The exhibition will continue through June 15, 2003.
The summer exhibition at the Wildling will be "Unbridled Beauty: Images of the Horse in American Art," and in the fall the Museum will display an exhibition of Ansel Adams' photographs.
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Search for more articles and essays on American art in Resource Library. See America's Distinguished Artists for biographical information on historic artists.
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