By Bob Bahr
Some great pieces of art were created over the past week at TexArt, but a Society of Animal Artists (SAA) show at R.S. Hanna Gallery in nearby Fredericksburg, Texas gave everyone a chance to see some of the TexArt participants’ best finished work on display. The result was stunning.
More than 75 pieces were on view at the exhibition, which will be up until June 26, 2016. Officials with SAA say the prospectus for the juried show asked signature members of SAA to submit art that adhered to a broad theme: Texas.
James Coe, the jury chair for SAA, thought hard about that theme. “I had some concerns about the Texas theme because it is so wide open,” Coe told us at the opening last night. “Many species overlap in Texas in terms of eastern birds and western birds, and so forth. With such wide diversity, there was a potential for it to be too broad. I didn’t know how it would come together. But it’s great.”
SAA members could submit up to three pieces for the show, with the five-person jury choosing as many as two from each interested member. The pieces didn’t have to feature an animal, and some submissions didn’t, but animals nonetheless ruled the day. Jury member Wes Siegrist was pleased with the results. “A piece had to be Texas, but not necessarily wildlife,” he confirmed. “This show is unique in that respect for our society. But even when we don’t require an animal in a piece, we often end up still putting one in.”
Siegrist said he was fond of how the pieces were displayed—salon style, with much to see in each of Hanna Gallery’s cozy rooms. “It looks like an avid collector’s home,” said Siegrist. “I love the tables and the wood supporting the sculptures. It’s like someone’s home instead of a cold museum setting. It looks amazing. That is why this gallery and this show has such charm.”
SAA secretary Kim Diment concurred. “I like the warm atmosphere. The artwork is presented in such a way that they are warm and glowing. The pieces fit well together, even though they are from so many people. It seems oriented toward a Western feel but there’s plenty of variety. And the artists in the rest of the gallery go well with the SAA pieces.”
For more information on the show, click here. Ω