Lloyd Blanks (Front Gallery XIII- Mesa with Green Sky

San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts Catalog

Accession no: 2005.3.5 Type of work: Textile, needlepoint

Permanent Collection

Artist/creator: Lloyd Walton Blanks
Variant forms of names: Lloyd Blanks
Born: 1922 Died: June 2002
Artist biography: Lloyd Blanks was born in 1922 near Abilene, Texas in the small town of Caps. He graduated in 1946from McMurry College in Abilene with a major in art. He did 2 years of graduate study in painting at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque and taught painting and design at McMurry College for 5 ½ years. He moved to New York City in 1951, where he studied art and worked at the New School for Social Research. He became interested in the unique possibilities of needlepoint as a serious creative medium in the 1970’s and retired in 1985 to devote full time to his art.

Title of work: Front Gallery XIII – Mesa with Green Sky
Date of item: 1981
Other markings/identifiers: On reverse: 5 white paper labels:
(1): “60 Front Gallery XIII – Mesa with Green Sky Jan 12 –May 6/81 49”x31”
(2) “Lloyd Walton Blanks Front Gallery Series and Other Works In Wool”
(3) “Marymount Manhattan College May ‘85”
(4) “New School Oct ‘82”
(5) “Textile Museum Sep ‘83”
Number “60” written in marker on backing bord
On front in lower left corner: woven into the piece is a red square with green letters “LB 81”

Dimensions: 49 ¾” x 31 ½” framed: 50 ½” x 32 ¼” (127 x 78.74; 129.54 x 81.28 cm)
Description: Foreground is a band of red and the background (sky area) is pale green with the image of mesas in the background in pale blue. There is a strong vertical stripe in deep purple.
Material: wool; cotton
Technique: needlepoint
Medium: Textile
Country of origin: U.S.

Artist’s statement about work: My grandmother called the porch that curved across the front of the farmhouse, the “front gallery”. In that house I was born in West Texas a little before the days of the Dust Bowl. From her rocking chair at the front window, she watched the road and the horizon mostly for weather changes, and I learned from her to look at horizons. In my work now I often return to the “front gallery” of my early years for a frame of reference and to the horizons touched by the noonday sun and the summer twilight. I try to winnow a statement that will stand clear and valid, spanning and uniting my years, and I try to say these things with the pictorial language I know, a formalism of structure with the atmosphere of color. 1983, from a solo exhibit at The Textile Museum, Washington, D.C.

I felt that I had known the needlepoint process somewhere in my own past. I grew up in West Texas in the 1930’s, a place distinguished by wide open space and the slow movement of time. I remembered that as a child I had spent hours with graph paper, pencil shading every other square until I had covered the entire sheet. I had moved forward on the graph paper square by square, line by line, just as I was doing on the mesh canvas. The gradual movement from stitch to stitch also reminded me of farm work I had done during my teens . . . the chopping of crops, the plowing, and the heading of maize. That, too, went step by step, row by row, and I was always looking behind at what had been done and forward to what remained, until the field was covered.
1988, from an article in FiberArts

Condition: Good, from Deed of Gift, dated 5-27-05
Conservation future: Unframe and re-frame to see if there is a barrier between artwork and backingboard

Provenance: Donated by Mark and Nancy Munden to SAMFA April 1, 2005 Mark Munden is a nephew of Lloyd Blanks and executor of his estate.
Donor information: Mark and Nancy Munden
History of object: Donated to SAMFA by Mark Munden on April 1, 2005. Accepted by SAMFA, May 19, 2005
Exhibitions: San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, “Painting with Fiber: Lloyd W. Blanks,” 10-11-02 – 1-5-03
Marymount Manhattan College Gallery, New York, Solo Exhibit, 1985
New School for Social Research, New York, Solo Exhibit, “Front Gallery Series and Other Works in Wool,” 1982
The Textile Museum, Washington, DC, 2 man exhibit, 1983
Credit line: Mark and Nancy Munden

Cataloger name: Karen Zimmerly
Date: August 2, 2005
Sources used: Museum file