Show Preview | Traveling the West  

Dallas, TX
Southwest Gallery, October 23-24

Wayne Baize, Reliable Transportation, oil, 18 x 24.

Wayne Baize, Reliable Transportation, oil, 18 x 24.

This story was featured in the October 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art October 2015 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story

Traveling the West, a brand-new show taking place this month, is set to become perhaps the year’s largest display and sale of Southwest art. At press time, more than 185 artists were confirmed as participants, and more than 500 paintings and 100 sculptures were slated to be exhibited in the event. The public is welcome to the sale and reception, held on Saturday, October 24, from 6 to 9 p.m. at Southwest Gallery. The fixed-price sale is conducted by draw.

Event director Ken Featherstone, of Featherstone Arts, brainstormed the show three years ago around the theme of settling the nation, whether by foot, horse, train, car, or plane. The theme is an important one to Featherstone, who served as a combat and aviation artist in the U.S. Air Force. “The American West wouldn’t have been opened if there hadn’t been a way to get there,” he observes. Steve Atkinson’s painting THE GREAT RACE represents the show well, featuring riders, wagon pioneers, a steam engine, and more. The featured artist spent six months creating the painting.

Atkinson appears in the show at Featherstone’s invitation—as do all the artists, including members of the Cowboy Artists of America, the American Society of Aviation Artists, Women Artists of the West, and other prestigious organizations. R. Tom Gilleon, Vic Payne, Nelson Boren, Tom Browning, and Gary Lynn Roberts are among the participants.

Browning found a suitable home for an already-in-progress work that pictures riders crossing the Diamond Tail Ranch. “A lot of people know me for dusty scenes. This one is a crisp, clear, spring day. There’s not a lot of action in it; it’s a peaceful scene. I thought it would fit the bill for this show,” he says.

Roberts painted three works exclusively for the show, detailing subjects such as a stage coach crossing, a wagon coming over a snowy mountain pass, and cowboys crossing a stormy river in the mountains. “They told me what the theme was, and I painted to match it. It came naturally to me,” he says. Roberts is participating in one of the show’s “How I Do a Painting” presentations, which are offered on both Friday and Saturday mornings—two of the many events happening during the weekend. He’s paired with Jennifer Johnson. “She’s going to show how she starts a painting, and I’m going to show how I start. But really it’s where you end up that’s important,” he says.

Friday, October 23, brings a Quick Finish art event, as well as a “wet sale” auction of the newly created works. A barbecue picnic lunch is offered on Friday and Saturday. Premium tickets cost $175 and include admission to all of the weekend’s events. The expansive Southwest Gallery is clearing its 16,000 square feet of space in order to devote every inch to this show. Traveling the West closes Saturday, October 24, but its reputation will surely last far beyond this October weekend. —Ashley M. Biggers

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Featured in the October 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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