Browse Exhibits (6 total)

Emblazoned Messages: Embellished Envelopes by Texas Prison Inmates


September 7 - October 31, 1999

This exhibit consisted of seventy-nine rarely seen drawings on envelopes by anonymous self-taught Texas prison inmates. The exhibit included work from prisoners housed in Gatesville, Tennessee Colony, Lovelady, Huntsville, Brazoria, and various other facilities of incarceration in Texas. The envelopes in this exhibition, while exhibiting the return address of a specific prisoner, were not decorated by that person. There is a long tradition within prisons of certain inmates being sought out for their drawing skills by prisoners wishing to send embellished mail to friends and family.

While decorated envelopes have long been an aspect of prisoner correspondence, actually looking at them as works of art was virtually unknown in America until recently. The last two decades have seen a growing interest in American self-taught artists and generated growing and substantial body of scholarly writing. However, the study of self-taught artists in Texas remains somewhat of a frontier to this day. The drawings in this exhibition invite the viewer to set aside traditional preconceptions about art and artists and to view the works within the context of their makers and the environment of confinement. All of these works are in some way an outgrowth of personal experience and illustrate for us a knowing and deeply emotive image of the prison condition. Many of these drawings were created in response to deeply disturbing events in the life of the maker. Virtually all self-taught artists make art that springs from some similarly catastrophic circumstances in their lives. The works, while exhibiting a "raw" character and unconventional appearance, also often possess a child-like use of color and line that allowed the anonymous makers to visualize love, hopes, dreams, and memories of a freedom distant to them.


Susan Sanders Up and Out - Recent Paintings


November 8 - December 15, 1998

"Unlike the forest covered, glacier cut topography of New England where I grew up, Dallas land is flat and seems wide.  Here, the fences seperate the ground into impossibly discrete parcels.  Overhead power lines cut the sky and quietly join these isolated places.  This relationship of land to sky is the general topic of my paintings."

--- Susan Sanders


A Greer Garson Scrapbook


September 8 - November 1, 1998

From September 8 through November 1, 1998 the Mildred Hawn Gallery in SMU's Jake and Nancy Hamon Arts Library was the venue for "A Greer Garson Scrapbook."

This exhibition was held in conjunction with the Meadows School of the Arts' Greer Garson film festival, September 11-13. It furnished a context for the films in the festival, as the exhibition documented her film and stage careers, philanthropic activities, her marriage to oilman Colonel E. E. "Buddy" Fogelson, and her friendships with a number of individuals prominent in twentieth-century American popular culture and history.

Nominated seven times for an Academy Award, Greer Garson received the Best Actress award in 1942 for her role in "Mrs. Miniver." The Exhibition represented a sampling of the approxiamately 60 linear feet of archival material donated to SMU by the actress who resided in Dallas following her 1949 marriage to Fogelson. These Scrapbooks, photographs, correspondence, and other papers in the Greer Garson Collection are housed in Bywaters Special Collections.

, ,

Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium by Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717)


April 27 - June 28, 1998

A portfolio of seventeen plates reproduced in 1964

Portfolio from the Dr. Eleanor Tufts Archive on Women Artists on deposit at SMU.


Clay Workers


March 2 - April 5, 1998

This exhibit featured ceramic works by SMU alumni, Lee Atkins, Roy Brown, Carolyn DeBus, Susie Moody, Madhvi Subrahmanian, and Marla Ziegler.


Photograms by Debra Fox


January 21 - February 20, 1998

"Photograms by Debra Fox." 13 photograms by Debra Fox on view in the Hawn Gallery January 21 through February 20, 1998. According to Ms. Fox:

"Some of the earliest photographs were what we would now call 'photograms' - meaning that instead of a negative's being used to generate a photographic print, the subject of the photograph itself constitutes the 'negative.' Depending on the density of the particular plant, these prints can take anywhere from four days to six months to print and are one of a kind, since there is no negative involved."

This process involves placing flowers, leaves, and other natural forms on paper she has chemically treated; the paper is then exposed to light. With the addition of organic chemicals, Ms. Fox is able to obtain photographs, or photograms, that are unique in form and color.

Debra Fox works as a staff member in SMU's Division of Studio Art and recently had her work on view in the exhibition "Introductions: Five Contemporary Texas Photographers" at the Contemporary Art Center of Fort Worth.