|Public Affairs - Press Release|
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Oct. 7, 2004
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
Lois Wilson’s artwork a part of Welty Weekend at The W
COLUMBUS, Miss. – A reception and showing of works by Lois Wilson will be held Thursday, Oct. 14 as part of Welty Weekend at The W at Mississippi University for Women.
The reception will be held in Shattuck Hall Art Gallery, where guests will be able to view Wilson’s artwork and have their books signed by authors participating in the 16th annual Eudora Welty Writers’ Symposium. The art exhibit opens Monday, Oct. 11 and will run through the end of this month.
Wilson attended all 12 grades of school in Fayette, Ala., and then enrolled at Auburn University where she studied architecture during the 1924-1925 school year before enrolling in Child’s School of Art in Boston.
In 1935, she moved to the alleys and attics of Greenwich Village in New York working odd jobs and taking art classes.
Enduring the depression of the 30s, she made a drastic career change when World War II began and she joined the Women’s Army Corps. The GI Bill afterward enabled her to attend the Art Students League in New York.
As a result of skyrocketing rent, she moved to 125 Clinton Place in the slums of Yonkers, N.Y.
After years of studying and painting, she wrote her former high school teacher “Miss Ann” Gullett, and said she wanted to begin disposing of her personal art collection, which included her work and that of others.
One hundred and ten pieces of art were given to the City of Fayette intended for founding the Fayette Art Museum, a longtime dream of hers. The earliest known record of her dream is a painting by C. Hillsmith. Wilson traded one of her paintings for Hillsmith’s the year she moved from Boston to New York, which was 1935. Thirty-four year later her dream—the Fayette Art Museum--came true.
Wilson’s gifts number nearly 2,700 in the 3,700-permanent collection of the Fayette Art Museum.
Alexander Stelioes-Wills, MUW Fine Art Gallery director, said, “Lois Wilson was making art all of her life and I am sure that the 2,700 works that she donated to the museum only represent a fraction of her total life output. For most of her life, her artwork reveals the influences of her training and the art world around her—from her earliest watercolors of architecture and cityscapes to her study of Cubism and Abstract Expressionism.”
Welty Weekend at The W is held in honor of MUW’s world-renowned alumna Eudora Welty and annually draws noted authors and scholars.
For more information about Welty Weekend, which is co-sponsored by the Robert M. Hearin Support Foundation, please contact MUW’s Office of Development at (662) 329-7148.
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