Not Multicultural in Theory but Multicultural in Reality: Texas Art to 1876

Friday, January 5, 2018: 10:30 AM
Virginia Suite C (Marriott Wardman Park)
Kenneth Hafertepe, Baylor University
Hispanic people, the Spanish military, and the Roman Catholic Church had all been in Texas for a century or more before Anglo settlers from the United States began to enter the province in 1820. The most imposing art of that first century of European occupation was carving in wood and stone on the mission churches, and painting applied al fresco to the walls of those missions.
The earliest artists from the US documented the visages of fellow immigrants, the appearance of fledgling cities such as Galveston, Houston, and Austin, but were especially drawn to the remains of the old missions of San Antonio, especially San Jose y San Miguel de Aguayo, Mission Concepcion, and San Antonio de Valero, better known as the Alamo. These were the subjects for U.S. Army officers Edward Everett and Seth Eastman - Army officers brought a new level of graphic sophistication to Texas - but also for immigrants from France and Germany, notably Theodore Gentilz, Friedrich Richard Petri, Hermann Lungwitz, Louise Heuser Wueste, and Elisabet Ney.
Building on the pioneering work of Pauline Pinckney, Cecilia Steinfeldt, William H. Goetzmann, and Ron Tyler, this paper will focus on the forty years between the Texas Revolution and the end of Reconstruction. Not surprisingly, the work of four leading immigrant artists reflects the influence of their specific European training: Gentilz in Paris, Lungkwitz and Petri in Dresden, Wueste in Dusseldorf, and Ney in Berlin.
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