May­nard Dixon Coun­try

Mount Carmel, UT

Western Art Collector - - CONTENTS -

In 1939, pain­ter May­nard Dixon and his third wife, Edith Ham­lin, built a home on prop­erty in Mount Carmel, Utah. It is now on the Na­tional Reg­is­ter of Historic Places, an im­por­tant des­ti­na­tion for visit­ing artists who wish to par­take in the beauty of south­ern Utah, and has been main­tained by the Thun­der­bird Foun­da­tion for the Arts since 1999.

To en­sure the preservati­on of the prop­erty, the Thun­der­bird Foun­da­tion hosts the yearly May­nard Dixon Coun­try event, a four-day cel­e­bra­tion of art that in­cludes sym­po­siums and art demon­stra­tions at the Old Rock Church, and po­etry read­ings and mu­si­cal per­for­mances at the May­nard Dixon Prop­erty. Artist par­tic­i­pants in the event in­clude G. Rus­sell Case, Glenn Renell, Louis Es­cobedo, Brett Allen John­son, Ray Roberts, Denise Larue Mahlke, Dilleen Marsh and Lorenzo Chavez, among many oth­ers.

The land­scapes of the Dixon prop­erty pro­vide end­less in­spi­ra­tion for Es­cobedo, who

says, “I love the geo­met­ric shapes in Utah. The moun­tains near Mount Carmel have so much splen­dor. As an artist I can only paint some of it.”

Renell will host a sym­po­sium on Dixon and mod­ernism. The artist de­scribes, “The stan­dards set by the nu­mer­ous painters that have found in­spi­ra­tion in Dixon Coun­try are high and pose a chal­lenge for ev­ery pain­ter work­ing there to­day. I’m look­ing for­ward to the in­ter­ac­tion with other painters and the in­spi­ra­tion and in­sight com­ing from their pre­sen­ta­tions. Ex­plor­ing big ideas in a non-aca­demic set­ting should lead to a free­wheel­ing and ex­cit­ing gath­er­ing.”

Chavez first saw his first Dixon paint­ings in the early 1990s at a Santa Fe mu­seum ex­hi­bi­tion, and they had a pro­found im­pact on him. “Dixon was a master at presenting those vast open spa­ces and his rev­er­ence of the land is so ap­par­ent,” he says. Chavez will show paint­ings of his home state of New Mex­ico, adding, “I try to paint in a way that rep­re­sents mem­o­ries of child­hood in­clud­ing the dry heat of the air, the rough and worn but solid adobe walls, the gen­tle hum of ci­cadas, the sweet scent of sage and piñon pine….i’m at­tempt­ing to emo­tion­ally move oth­ers the way that May­nard Dixon’s paint­ings con­tinue to move me.”

May­nard Dixon Coun­try will take place Wed­nes­day, Au­gust 22, through Satur­day, Au­gust 25, with a gala re­cep­tion oc­cur­ring Fri­day evening from 6 to 9 p.m.

G. Rus­sell Case, Pink Cliffs, oil, 20 x 24”

Brett Allen John­son, Sand­stone Shad­ows, oil on linen, 18 x 24”

Denise Larue Mahlke, High Above, pas­tel, 25 x 18”

G. Rus­sell Case, New Mex­ico Au­tumn, oil on linen, 24 x 30”

Ray Roberts, Canyon Light, oil on linen, 24 x 30”

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