06/11/2021 - 01/16/2022
From the Fitzgibbon Collection within the Permanent Collection
Born in Los Angeles, Ca. John Fitz Gibbon (1934-2009) was an art critic, professor of art history, radio broadcaster, and collector of postwar California art. From the 1960s on, he was in the art scene both socially and as a contributor to writing on significant artists of the moment that continue today, including these California-based artists and one who relocated to Texas, Don Hazlitt. This facet of the permanent collection came to be donated into the permanent collection after a visit from John Fitz Gibbon who came to the Art Museum of South Texas to attend the opening of Representing L.A. -California Narrative Painting in 2001.
John and Jane Fitz Gibbon hosted a series of “events” in their garden grounds in L.A. of choreographed performances and theatrical celebrations inspired by ancient myths. This theatrical interest was a part of John’s personality and was a feature that his students, artists who knew him, and colleagues recall with vivid memories.
This selection of work depicts the fascination with human beings with culture and beauty exemplified in a myriad of forms on the picture plane, with the artist’s considerations, conveying how a work of art communicates by way of techniques employed by these west-coast artists use of the building blocks of art-making.
This is one facet of the permanent collection that together as a body of work presents what moved a collector, what they responded to pictorially, and what ultimately came to live here, in this collection, for museum visitors to consider as representing a way of living and art-making.
Deborah Fullerton, AMST Curator of Exhibitions