Museum of the Big Bend
400 N. Harrison Street, Alpine, TX 79832 www.museumofthebigbend.com
The Museum of the Big Bend hosts four exhibits annually in its gallery. Beginning in mid-january, the late-winter exhibit reflects how the Texas landscape influences who and what decides to call Texas home. In April the museum celebrates their Western and cowboy culture and tradition through works shown in Trappings of Texas. Trappings of Texas began in 1985 and is the longest continually running exhibit and sale in the country, showcasing together contemporary cowboy gear and fine Western art. In June, the gallery is devoted to the art of photography. September the gallery showcases art exhibits with shows ranging from historic maps, to works by Charles M. Russell to contemporary artists.
The Museum of the Big Bend will be hosting the 32nd Trappings of Texas with an opening weekend of events April 12 through 14. Weekend events include a preview and after-preview party, lunch with the artists, grand opening reception, exhibit and sale and the fourth annual Ranch Round-up Party. The exhibit opens to the public on Saturday, April 14 along with talks and demonstrations. Chessney Sevier of Buffalo, Wyoming, is the 2018 Trappings of Texas Premier Artist. New artists to Trappings of Texas include Janet Broussard, Nathan Solano and Thor Peterson,
along with Navajo weavers represented by Mark Winters of Toadlena Trading Post.
The Museum of the Big Bend is excited to present the 32nd Annual Trappings of
Texas, followed by two outstanding exhibits: Fototexas, People, Places & Culture curated by photographer Laura Wilson for the Texas Photographic Society, and Big Bend Paintings
by California landscape artist Erin Hanson of San Diego, California. All three exhibits will feature special presentations and demonstrations by the exhibiting artists. Robbie Fitzpatrick works in watercolor. “It can be challenging, but it can do so much, and I suppose I love the problem solving,” says the artist. Fitzpatrick also paints realistically, using value, with the play of light and shadow and strong composition to tell the story.
The artist’s favorite subjects are animals, both wildlife and domestic. “I believe I’m partial to them because if I can get their eyes right, most of the story is told, and I include the rest of the narrative in the remaining detail,” says Fitzpatrick. That may mean the setting, or at least the stance and expression of the animal. “I’ve started work on some figurative and portrait work, and the same aspects attract me—the story in the eyes. I suppose what I enjoy most is capturing moments in the lives around me.
“Every piece seems to challenge me with a new puzzle to be conquered,” Fitzpatrick continues, “from painting eyes, to fur, to feather, grass, dirt, rocks, water, waves, skies, clouds, stormy clouds, sunlight, rain or mist. I believe I could study watercolor for an entire lifetime and never know it all. What a challenge!”
So far, highlights of a career that started later in life (the artist spent most of life teaching writing) include increasing success in competitions, membership in many art organizations, such as Women Artists of the West, International Guild of Realism, Society of Animal Artists. Fitzpatrick is also an Art Renewal Center Living Artist.
Currently, Fitzpatrick has a piece in the Society of Animal Artists’ 2017-18 Art and the Animal Tour at the Arizona-sonora Desert Museum in Tucson, Arizona, from April 14 through June 3; then, the artist will show at the George A. Spiva Center for the Arts in Joplin, Missouri, June 30 through August 26. The artist will also have a piece in the 43rd annual Western Federation of Watercolor Societies Exhibition at the Southern Arizona Guild Gallery in Tucson, Arizona, from May
1 through June 24.
Fitzpatrick is represented by Lovetts Fine
Art Gallery in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Western works on display at the Museum of the Big Bend.
Left: Robbie Fitzpatrick, Stealth, watercolor on paper, 19 x 10" Right: Persuasion, watercolor on paper, 20 x 24"
Museum of the Big Bend, Full Flower Carved Saddle, by Marc Brogger.
Robbie Fitzpatrick, Gentle