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Southern Landscapes by Lamar Dodd and Will Henry Stevens

August 22 - October 17, 2009


Evocative paintings in oil, pastel and watercolor will be showcased in The Bascom's exhibition, "Southern Landscapes by Lamar Dodd and Will Henry Stevens." (right: Will Henry Stevens (1881-1946), Untitled, pastel on paper)

The exhibition, co-curated by Carol Carr and Dr. William Eiland, opened August 22, 2009 and continues through October 17, 2009.

With this exhibition, The Bascom honors the Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust's 100th year of local land conservation. The show not only hails the accomplishments of two of the South's greatest art teachers and painters, but also pays homage to land preservation. Dodd (1909-1996) was head of the University of Georgia's art department. Stevens (1881-1946) taught at the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College in New Orleans, La., part of Tulane University. The Bascom's covered bridge is named in honor of Stevens (reconstructed with help from donors Dorothy and Jimmy Coleman and Dian and Tom Winingder).

"Dodd and Stevens' work exemplifies an affinity for nature as embodied in landscape," said Kaye Gorecki, Bascom artistic director. "Stevens and Dodd were famous university teachers and still have a tremendous following among artists, art students and art collectors. The landscape theme is in tribute not only to these tremendously talented artists, but also to the Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust as they celebrate their centennial. The Trust's mission of preserving natural areas, scenic beauty and green spaces echoes the visions of Stevens and Dodd."

Eiland and Carr presented remarks during the exhibition opening reception on August 22.


Selected wall text for the exhibition

Dodd and Stevens were academy-trained artists who gained famed as university teachers and as intrepid painters. Each still has a tremendous following among Southeastern artists, art collectors and museum goers. Stevens taught for many years at the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College in New Orleans, Louisiana, part of Tulane University, and Dodd at The University of Georgia, Athens, where the Lamar Dodd School of Art bears his name.

This exhibition, co-curated by Carol Carr and Dr. William Eiland, is in tribute not only to Stevens' love of the lowlands of Louisiana and highlands of Appalachia and Dodd's love of Monhegan Island, Maine, and the red-clay terrain of Georgia, but also to the Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust's 100th anniversary. The Trust's mission of preserving natural areas, scenic beauty and green spaces echoes the realistic and abstract scenes that Stevens and Dodd rendered in graphite, oil, pastel and watercolor.

Thanks to our sponsors: Cathy and Bob Fisher, Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust, and Old Edwards Club Members-Sydney Gaines Lanier, Penny and Ed Mawyer, Pam and Chuck Watson, Angela and Art Williams and Patsy and Bill Wolff.


Biography of Lamar Dodd

Lamar Dodd was not only the most recognized artist of his generation from the state of Georgia, but also a passionate advocate for the arts. His most visible legacy is the Lamar Dodd School of Art at the University of Georgia.

Born on September 22, 1909 and reared in LaGrange, Dodd began art instruction at an early age. After briefly attending the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, he enrolled at the Art Students League in New York City. He studied privately with George Luks (1867-1933), an artist associated with the early 20th century Ashcan School, also known as The Eight. Dodd was influenced by the Ashcan artists' emphasis on realism, use of a somber palette and depictions of daily life.

Dodd returned to the south in 1933, where he promoted a "local art," one that featured southern scenes, southern history and southern people. As part of a national movement to put working artists into universities, Dodd was appointed to the faculty of the University of Georgia in 1937, and the department grew quickly thanks to his efforts. In the 1940s Dodd began to expand his painting subjects to include the north Georgia mountains and South Carolina's coast.

By the 1950s, Dodd began to travel the world, first to Europe where he studied the old masters and 19th-century artists and, later, as a cultural emissary for the State Department to the United Soviet Union, the Mid East, and Asia. During the 1960s, Dodd painted for the NASA art program, and a decade later he investigated another, more intimate universe -- that of the human heart. In the 1980s and early 1990s, Dodd returned to the natural world for his subjects. The seascapes of Monhegan Island in Maine were a favorite subject, as were the sunflowers of America and Europe. Before his death in 1996, Dodd once again painted realistic American scenes.

In his career Dodd went full circle, from depictions of daily life to studies of cosmic forces and, finally, back to a private, personalized universe. For fully two-thirds of the 20th century, Lamar Dodd represented Georgia's visual arts community as administrator, teacher and advocate. His work is found in premier collections, among them the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA; Marshall Space Flight Center Art Collection, Huntsville, AL; Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, GA; and Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington D.C.

- Dr. William Eiland


About The Bascom

The Bascom's address is 323 Franklin Road, Highlands, North Carolina. Please see the Museum's website for hours and admission fees.


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