Dallas’s Tobolowsky and Sherry Owens are no strangers to
India. Tobolowsky recently sent four of his large sculptures to a
collector there who had seen his work at Dallas’s Museum of
Biblical Art. And in 2011, Owens spent several weeks in the
country, first joining Sharon and Gus Kopriva to see Sharon’s
exhibition in Mumbai. While there, Amita Bhatt joined them. They
were eventually joined by Charmaine Locke. After the Koprivas
returned to the US, Owens, Bhatt, and Locke traveled to Vadodara
where they spent several weeks doing an artists’ residency at Bhatt’s
alma mater, Maharaja Sayajirao University. Owens says, “It was a
real treat to visit the campus and meet several of the faculty.” On
the same trip, Locke and Owens traveled to Agra and Varanasi.
Their experiences on that trip still inform their work.
Every exhibition has its challenges, even for this group of
veterans whose work has been seen worldwide. As James Surls
says, “Sculpture is hard. It takes up the most room and it makes
the most noise.” But the challenges facing this group are unique.
Tobolowsky worried about its installation, saying they aren’t even
sure what equipment would be available. Moreover, such a large
space inevitably includes quite a bit of wall space, prompting most
of the artists to send works on paper in addition to their sculptures.
This exhibition is supported by the Lalit Kala Akademi in New
Delhi, the United States Embassy in India, the Crow Collection of
Asian Art in Dallas, the Texas Commission on the Arts in Austin,
and Anubhav Nath, director of the Nath Foundation.
Joining the artists will be a group representing the Crow
Collection, as well as the museum’s director, Amy Lewis Hofland,
and curator, Dr. Karin Oen. Hofland says, “We are excited to be
offering our members and friends the opportunity to be a part of
this extraordinary travel opportunity to India and a groundbreaking
cultural exchange.” In addition to the opening at the Lalit Kala
Akademi, followed by an opening party hosted by the American
Embassy and the Crow Collection, the group will go to the Golden
Triangle, visiting artists’ studios along the way.
As an added benefit, Texas! will coincide with the India Art Fair,
the largest art fair in Southeast Asia. For Tobolowsky, “Having an Sherry Owens, Heart of the Prairie, 2007, crepe myrtle,
dye, wax, 51 x 38 x 30 in.
James Surls, The Holding Ring,
2006, steel, 45 x 42 x 19 in.
“It is important to have an ongoing dialogue.
It works better when you have artists meeting
with artists. That’s when things happen.”