Outsider Art in Texas by Jay Wehnert
Texas looms large: big skies, vast plains, large cities. The Lone Star State often inspires a heightened sense of place in its citizens that rivals or surpasses that of New Yorkers. This is frequently reflected in the art of Texas—paintings of bluebonnet fields, longhorn cattle, and scenes from the Texas frontier have long enjoyed popularity with collectors.
Outsider artists, on the other hand, live and create on the fringes of culture and society. Generally removed from the influence of place, they prefer instead to chart their own, intensely personal, interior landscapes. They usually have little awareness of or connection to the mainstream art world or its history, and they typically possess limited intention that their work will have an audience or find a place in the broader landscape of art.
Woven through the lives and work of outsider artists is a common thread of isolation. This isolation may be psychological, cultural, socio-economic, geographical, racial or institutionally imposed. Circumstances of life, chosen or not, have placed these artists apart. However, these artists, like their formally trained peers, find that they are compelled to make art; it is essential to their lives as a manifestation of their personal histories, societal and cultural forces and an unfailing drive to express themselves.
In Outsider Art in Texas: Lone Stars, author Jay Wehnert takes readers on a visually stunning excursion through the lives and work of 11 outsider artists from Texas, a state particularly rich in outsider artists of national and international renown.
Hardcover. 117 Pages.