News and updates

For a complete list of all news and updates, see the Ralph Art Website Project.

  • Tue, 29 Nov 2022 20:15:45 +0000

    The tale of a stretcher

    This will probably be a long drawn out shaggy dog (because cats aren’t shaggy) story but bear with me.

    I was reorganizing my studio, trying to improve my storage situation. These days, a large painting for me is around 40 x 60 inches, the biggest size I can easily transport. When I was much younger, I worked ridiculously large – like 4 1/2 feet by 6 feet, all the way up to 5 x 8 feet . Large paintings are great to work on, but they are a bitch to store, and and even more of a bitch to transport. So back to now: in addition to several primed and unused monster canvases, I had several unstretched stretchers I’d been holding onto since my youth, hopeful someday my situation would once again justify doing paintings of a “heroic” scale.

    Yeah right.

    My epiphany hit me: I am NEVER going to work that large again.

    So I decided the smart thing to do would be to take them apart and recycle/resize them.

    Label on the back of a stretcher in my possession.

    The largest of the bunch was one I’d gotten from a friend who’d worked as an installer in the early 90s at the Fort Worth Modern. This behemoth measured 89 x 150 inches (that’s about 7 1/2 by 12 1/2 feet). On the back was the label shown above – the stretcher had formerly borne “Custer’s Last Stand #1,” painted in 1973 by American artist Peter Saul, a figure associated with the Pop movement, though his work was much more than that. He’d painted it sometime between my freshman and sophomore year at TCU.

    It’s a truly amazing piece.

    Peter Saul, Custer’s Last Stand #1, acrylic on canvas, 89 x 150 in,1973

    Peter Saul taught at UT Austin in the 1980s and 90s, which would fit with him being included in a show at the Ft Worth Modern during that time. How it came to pass that the painting left DFW while its stretcher stayed behind is anybody’s guess, although shipping an unstretched painting, especially one of this scale, is bound to be a lot cheaper than shipping it stretched and ready to go (remember what I said about transporting big pieces).

    I can only hope Mr. Saul will not hold it against me that I chopped up this former bearer of his work, and that maybe some of his greatness will rub off on me….at least a little bit. To see more of his amazing work, go to:

    Ars longa vita brevis.

  • Wed, 02 Nov 2022 19:50:09 +0000

    Art Room Small Works Show, Friday Nov. 4, 2022

    I love Small Works shows (and enter them whenever I can). The holiday season will usually see a number of them and it’s a great time to pick up some little – usually very affordable – pieces.

    If you’ve been following me on Facebook or Instagram, you’ve seen lots of my cat-related art. Now’s your chance to add one to your collection! I’ve got three pieces in this year’s Art Room Small Works Show, all 8 x 10 inches, ready to hang, and priced to sell!  And if you don’t like cats (I find this hard to believe!), there *will* be lots of other works available by other artists.

    Exhibition Dates: November 4 – December 17, 2022
    Opening reception November 4, 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM
    Arts Fort Worth: 1300 Gendy St, Fort Worth, TX 76107

  • Wed, 07 Sep 2022 20:01:59 +0000

    Fall 2022 art happenings

    I’m in a few more shows this fall – very exciting!

    Fort Worth Biennial 2022 at Arts Fort Worth

    The outbreak of Covid put the kibosh on the previous Biennial. Of the three pieces I entered for this year’s Fort Worth Biennial, I was especially happy the juror,  Lilia Kudili, chose “Programming Man.” It’s a big painting and has almost everyone of my favorite things to paint: my messy bedroom with wrinkly bedding, quilts, one of my sons, and multiple cats.

    I originally showed this at my solo show, Then and Now, in the fall of 2020 and (because of Covid) not a lot of folks got a chance to see it. Now it’s back if you missed it before. Opening is on Saturday, September 10 (Fall Gallery Night in Fort Worth) and will be up through October 3.

    Image of painting, "Programming Man"
    “Programming Man”, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 70 in, 2020

    Exhibition Dates: September 10 – October 3, 2022
    Reception: Saturday, September 10 (9 AM – 9 PM) 
    Arts Fort Worth: 1300 Gendy Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76107

    CCAN 2022: Center for Contemporary Arts National Juried Competition

    The Center for Contemporary Arts in Abilene, Texas, is housed in a great space and is a vibrant community of artists. This will be the 3rd time I’ve been invited to show in their National Juried Competition, and like last year, I have been honored to have two pieces accepted. I was working on “Untitled (man in chair),” shown below, right up to entry deadline.

    Show open September 30 through November 26, with a reception and awards ceremony from 3 – 5 pm on Saturday, October 1 at the Center for Contemporary Arts.

    Untitled (man in chair), acrylic on canvas, 36 x 48 in, 2022

    Painting: title Woman and man with roses
    Woman and man with roses, acrylic on canvas, 30 x 40 in, 2021

    Exhibition Dates: September 30 – November 26, 2022
    Reception and Awards Ceremony: Saturday, October 1 (3 – 5 PM) 
    The Center for Contemporary Arts: 220 Cypress Street, Abilene, Texas 79601

  • Fri, 01 Jul 2022 20:22:56 +0000

    Summer of Art – 2022

    After a busy spring (shows in Dallas, Fort Worth, and Granbury), summer 2022 is heating up as well (sorry – couldn’t resist).

    “Recountable” at Bath House Cultural Center in Dallas

    This spring I was included in a juried show at Bath House Cultural Center as part of the ART214 Juried Exhibition. Enrique Fernández Cervantes, Visual Arts Coordinator / Curator at the BHCC contacted me after that show to invite me to participate in a new show he was putting together, Recountable, which focuses on the use of narrative and story-telling. The show, which opens July 2, 2022, features 15 DFW/North Texas Artists, including me.

    Dinner Table,” which I last showed in Fort Worth in 2016 at the late lamented Gallery 414, will be on exhibit, along with “Travelers,” painted in 2017.

    Dinner Table; oil on canvas, 24 x 48 in., 2016

    Exhibition Dates: July 2 – August 13, 2022
    Reception: Saturday, July 2 (5-7 PM) 
    Bath House Cultural Center: 521 E. Lawther Dr., Dallas, TX 75218

    9th Annual Texas Juried Exhibition at Artspace111

    I don’t mind saying, this one was a surprise. It’s been (ahem) several years since I’ve gotten in this show, which is always one of my favorites, whether I’m in it or not. The accepted piece is a painting of my friend of many years, Fort Worth Artist and Theater Wunderkind, John C. Moore. You just never know what a juror will (or won’t) respond to. Just glad to be part of the fun again!

    Untitled (artist); acrylic on canvas, 30 x 40 in., 2022

    Exhibition Dates: July 16 – August 27, 2022
    Reception: Saturday, July 16 (5-7 PM)
    Artspace111: 111 Hampton St., Fort Worth, TX, 76102

    CHAOS8! 2022 at Ro2

    I was invited to participate in the CHAOS 7(?) small works show at Ro2 Art in Dallas a couple of years ago, then Covid reared its ugly head. Now it’s back, and I got invited again! Artists submit 1 – 4 works 12 inches or smaller. Details are still rolling in on this one – plus I’m currently working on small pieces. More when I know more!

    Exhibition Dates: Aug 6 – Sept 19, 2022
    Reception: Saturday, Aug 6 (times TBA)
    Ro2 Art: 1531 S Ervay, Dallas, TX, 76102

  • Mon, 28 Mar 2022 19:32:34 +0000

    2.62 Persons: A House; A Home; A Statistic; A Family

    I’ve been fortunate enough to get into several shows this spring, including two in Dallas as part of the ART214 exhibits, and two in the Rio Brazos show in Granbury, sponsored by Tarleton State University.

    Closer to home, Texas Artists Coalition’s upcoming exhibit, 2.62 Persons: A House; A Home; A Statistic; A Family will include three of my paintings. To say I was shocked all three of my entries were accepted would be an understatement! Two are old favorites from a couple of years old, but the third is fresh off the easel, so to speak.

    Cat on bed, acrylic on canvas, 36 x 58 in, 2022

    The exhibit will be shown at the newly rechristened Arts Fort Worth (formerly known as Fort Worth Community Arts Center). Arts Fort Worth has remodeled some of the galleries and the space is really impressive! As has historically been the case, there will be multiple openings all happening on the first Friday of the month, so be sure and wander through the galleries to see what else is going on.

    Hope to see you there!

    Exhibition Dates: April 1-30, 2022
    Reception: Friday, April 1 (6-9 PM)
    Address: Arts Fort Worth, 1300 Gendy St, Fort Worth, TX 76107 

Untitled (news of the day), acrylic on canvas, 38 x 58 in, 2019
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