About the Exhibition
After a long career of experiencing a lot of art, it is very rare that I encounter new contemporary art that stuns me by its depth of heart and its breadth of mind. That happened when I saw the work of Pecos Pryor for the first time.
It wasn’t because his woodcuts, etchings, and lithographs, etc. are perfectly crafted and meticulously presented, nor because of their high beauty factor, though all of those factors contributed. And it wasn’t because Pryor has a way of describing his work in a simple but intelligent way, though that also provides one a sense of his strong curiosity about the world.
No, I was moved by Pryor’s work because of the “unforeseen meaning” that permeates it. As an artist, he approaches fundamental human themes—common labor, hand tools, and light-industrial materials—and transforms them into something poetic. For example, one would not foresee that a pile of pencil shavings could be so reticent with meaning. But there it is in his photograph, Two Years, singing to our eyes and our hearts like the lyrics of a visual troubadour.
Pryor also finds meaning in the themes of time and space. In A Mile of Lines—an exquisitely colored, blue lithograph—he literally scribed by hand a complete mile of fine lines, and he composed it into a space no larger than a carpenter’s apron. It is a poetic tribute to how a long distance and careful drawing can be combined in a way that celebrated “life’s natural procession”, as the artist describes it. Pryor’s work might be compared to that of another Texas artist, Dario Robleto, but his deepest roots may go back to the Dadaist Marcel Duchamp.
Texas Arthouse is proud to present the work of Pecos Pryor. A native of Dripping Springs, he earned his Master of Fine Art degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2018, and is teaching art at Wesmont College in Santa Barbara, California, where he earned his B.A. in studio art in 2010.
~ Mark L. Smith, PhD
Selection from Pecos Pryor’s Artist Statement
“Time and Lines consists of ten variations of the distance of one mile and five art objects that use increments of time as their departure point. The “A Mile of Lines” pieces include the printmaking processes of etching, drypoint, stone lithography as well as a weaving, photo book, colored pencil drawing, graphite rubbing, an unprinted relief wood block and the collected wood shavings from this carving. The time pieces are primarily drawings with graphite and colored pencil in addition to a photographs of selectively collected detritus.