Maynard Dixon Legacy Museum showcases southwestern painters in holiday art show

Stock image, St. George News

MT. CARMEL — Enjoy culture and fine arts right here in untamed beautiful southern Utah. The Maynard Dixon Legacy Museum in Mt. Carmel invites you to the Holiday Small Paintings Show running Nov. 1 through Dec. 31.

The gallery is located on historic Highway 89 and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., no appointment necessary. The annual show features exclusive paintings showcasing a variety of talented artists. Visits to the art gallery, located on the historic Maynard Dixon property, are free of charge. After enjoying the artwork, take a tour of the Dixon home and grounds for a small fee.

Dixon is the most important modern painter in the western United States, who moved to Mt. Carmel in 1939. His goal was to capture the true soul of desert landscapes and denizens honestly without idealization. All tours and art sales support the Thunderbird Foundation for the Arts and the preservation of Dixon’s home and property. Every visitor to this holiday exhibition is eligible for a free Dixon poster when they register online.

Photo courtesy of the Thunderbird Foundation for the Arts, St. George News

You won’t want to miss this beautiful exhibition of southwestern art featuring the following great artists:

Russell Case was inspired to develop his own unique approach by his most important mentor, Robert Henri. Case is a native of Utah who paints directly from nature to record color and light. He has had many one-man shows and won many awards.

Charles Muench is an artist living in between the Sierra Nevada mountains and the high plains desert of Nevada. He received a bachelor’s degree in fine arts with great distinction from San Jose State University. Muench also studied in Madrid, Spain, where he painted the city and countryside. Muench is a master of capturing the nuances of light in his landscape paintings.

Louis Escobedo was born in Sweetwater, Texas. His many talents include experimenting with composition, design and seeing today’s life and objects from a philosophical point of view filled with humor and beauty. Whether it is people walking down the street, a kitchen sink or the window of a retail store, his work has imagination, color and insight of all that he sees and feels. Escobedo is always striving to master his use of color, tone and texture.

Glenn Rennell is a native of the northeastern United States who studied art at the Rhode Island School of Design and University of Massachusetts. After a tour in Vietnam with the U.S. Navy, Rennell’s style evolved from abstract to landscape painting, today indulging in the color and texture of the southwestern landscape around his home in Arizona.

Kraig Kiedrowski works in pastel, watercolor, oils, etching and monotype. Born and raised in Montana, he eventually settled in Northern California and took up outdoor painting. He attributes his love of landscape and the outdoors to his boyhood in Montana and exploring coastal Northern California. Travels in Texas and the Southwest brought new inspiration for his work.

Award-winning artist Ray Roberts grew up in Orange County, California with its orange groves, before the days of freeways and sprawling housing developments. Roberts attended Orme School, a beautiful, ranch-style boarding school in the Arizona desert. Its strong fine arts program helped him to discover his artistic talent.

David Lee is an award-winning watercolor impressionist who paints landscapes and figures. His style is loose, bold and spontaneous. Lee’s goal is to capture a moment in time that may invoke feeling and interest from viewers. He paints atmosphere, light and the moment, not subjects, he says. For Lee, painting is just another way of keeping a diary.

Carolyn Lord was raised in Southern California and now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her works are an expression of her varied interests, including gardens and architecture. Lord is inspired by the California impressionists and the regionalist watercolor tradition initiated by Millard Sheets. She teaches the drawing fundamentals of perspective and of the figure.

Lorenzo Chavez was born in New Mexico, where the striking landscapes, varied cultures and colorful history helped him develop an appreciation for art at an early age. Intensive private study of the impressionists and 19th century American and Russian impressionist-realist painters has made him aware of the wonderful possibilities and importance of painting from life.

Spike Ress was born in Long Island, New York but grew up in New Mexico, where the landscape and culture influenced his artistic direction. In 1978, he left his commercial art career to pursue fine art full-time, painting in both watercolor and oils. He exhibits extensively and has earned numerous awards.

Anton Nowels is an accomplished artist with exhibitions at a national level. His work is experimental by nature and is reflective of his interdisciplinary art and performance degree. His workshop and artwork explore impressionists’ approaches taught by Charles Hawthorne, Henry Hensche and Sergei Bongart. In addition, he enjoys painting a variety of subjects and experimenting with painting techniques.

Robert Goldman, born in 1948 in Evanston, Illinois, has been a professional artist since 1971. Goldman’s paintings are based both on plein air and studio work. He attended the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, where he was accepted with advanced standing and awarded a scholarship. Goldman has received numerous awards and has been included in several books and publications.

Susan Bingham is the co-founder of the Thunderbird Foundation for the Arts. She studied art with Charles Muench and paints nearly every day. She said of her work:

“I love the wonder and miracle of nature. In my art I find myself focusing on the intimate scene of objects transformed by various light effects and time of day. I try to capture the emotion and feeling that inanimate objects reveal; the mystery in shadow, the excitement of color and form. I enjoy the process of creating and learning through my mistakes and failures, and being inspired by all of the wonderful artists I have had the opportunity to know in the life I lead.”

The Thunderbird Foundation for the Arts is a nonprofit organization whose mission is the preservation and maintenance of the Maynard Dixon home and property in Mt. Carmel. The foundation restored the buildings and grounds to look as they did when Dixon lived. Their goal is not only to preserve the Dixon property, but also support artists living today by showcasing their work at the Thunderbird Foundation Art Gallery.

Additionally, the gallery hosts shows, educational forums for art groups, artist retreats, workshops and daily tours of the historical property. The home is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Visit the Maynard Dixon Legacy Museum this holiday season to be immersed in the beautiful artwork displayed at the Holiday Small Paintings Show. For more information about the painters being exhibited in the show or the Maynard Dixon Legacy Museum and its mission, visit the Thunderbird Foundation for the Arts website.

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