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 LaWanda Murfee  (1921 - )

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Lived/Active: Texas      Known for: landscape

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Ad Code: 4
LaWanda Murfee
from Auction House Records.
Rio Grande
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:

"Visual art has influenced my life as long as I can remember.  Before books, museums, galleries and famous artist instructors, prairie town painters magnetized my youthful free spirit and set patterns that would eventually lead to a professional career.

An eccentric neighbor from Illinois, whose Victorian house was hung floor to ceiling with her own paintings, wove stories of  Chicago and Cleveland art centers, while I caressed large pieces of baroque bronzes in her collection and she exposed me to the fragrance of oil and turpentine.

My first grade teacher recognized and praised a talent; subsequent teachers encouraged development.  A family friend, confined to her chair, exemplified the joy attained from using one’s artistic talent.

My earliest recollections include spending long afternoons in my father’s hardware store where I would pull up a stool and open drawers filled with long handled brushes.  Above them, pigeon holes sheltered tubes of oil paints.  I would conjure up all kinds of pictures as I carefully unscrewed their caps and in my imagination, paint with the brilliant colors.  My mother was as tantalized by the art materials and she and I found many uses for the shopworn or damaged supplies in her crates.

My first visit to a museum of renown was in St. Louis while a freshman in college, and the winning of a costume design award from a dress manufacturer during the same time shoved me further into drawing and painting.

While requirements of child rearing overshadowed the developing interest, the talent lay dormant for several years, until a loving, sharing person watered and nurtured those stored seeds.  The growth since is budding all over with full blossoming yet to come.

After the shirt of family responsibilities, new directions toward artistic pursuits brought fresh challenges each day. I have always had an extreme empathy with the Indian culture, even in beginning paintings and landscapes.  It was not until the family lineage was traced seventeen generations and the Cherokee heritage surfaced and melded with pastoral English-Scottish-French ancestry, some of whom were artistically productive, that I understood those leanings.  I searched for professional instruction on color and finally met Henry Hensche of Provincetown, Massachusetts who taught the effect of light on color.  My excitement for painting burst out of its containment! Following enrollment of Art Students League, New York, workshops with top artists in America pushed me headlong into a painting career."

Amarillo Art Center, Amarillo TX
Chamber of Commerce, Lubbock, TX
Citizen National Bank, Eugene, OR
Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, TX
Elizabeth Ney Museum, Austin, TX
First National Bank, Plainview, TX
Garden-Art Center, Lubbock, TX
Godbold Cultural Center, Lubbock, TX
Highland Park Library, Dallas, TX
Hobbs Junior College, Hobbs, NM
Howard Payne College, Brownwood, TX
Laguna Gloria Museum, Austin, TX
Lindenwood College, St. Charles, MO
Lubbock Civic Center, Lubbock, TX
Lubbock National Bank, Lubbock, TX
McKinney Library, McKinney, TX
Methodist Hospital, Lubbock, TX
Midwestern University, Wichita Falls, TX
Museum of Fine Arts, Abilene, TX
Museum of the Southwest, Midland, TX
Plains National Bank, Lubbock, TX
Red River, NM
Ruidoso, NM
Salmagundi Club, NY
Sam Rayburn Building, Washington, DC
Sheraton Santa Fe Inn, Santa Fe, NM
South Plains Bank, Levelland, TX
South Plains College, Levelland, TX
Southwestern Arts & Crafts, Albuquerque, NM
Terrance Gallery, Palenville, NY
Texas Tech University Center, Lubbock, TX
Texas Tech University, College of Human Sciences
Texas Tech University Museum, Lubbock, TX
United States Coast Guard Artist (COGAP)
Western Texas College, Snyder, TX

International Society of Artists, Honorable Mention
Louisiana International Exhibition, Traveling Show
Signature I-V, Lubbock, TX
Southwest Watercolor Society, Traveling Show
Texas Fine Arts Association, 63rd Annual National Exhibits
Texas Watercolor Society
Western Federation Watercolor Societies

Solo  Shows
Charles Adams Gallery, Lubbock, TX
Burnet State Bank, Burnet, TX
Garden-Art Center, Lubbock, TX
Godbold Cultural Center, Lubbock, TX
Highland Park Library, Dallas, TX
Lubbock Chamber of Commerce
Plainview First National Bank, Plainview, TX
Ruidoso, NM
Schneider, Bernet & Hickman, Lubbock, TX
Scurry County Museum, Snyder, TX
Spicewood Gallery, Austin, TX
Texas Tech University, Student Center & Human Sciences, Lubbock, TX

Public Commissions:
American Cancer Society American Heart Association Charter Plains Hospital, Lubbock, TX
First Federal Savings & Loan, Lubbock, TX
First National Bank, Plainview, TX
First United Methodist Church, Lubbock, TX
Hodges Cancer Center, Lubbock, TX
Joe Arrington Cancer Center, Lubbock, TX
Lubbock Arts Alliance, Lubbock, TX
Lubbock Arts Festival, Lubbock, TX
Lubbock National Bank, Lubbock, TX
Lubbock Symphony Guild, Lubbock, TX
Medical Complex, Lubbock, TX
Methodist Hospital, Lubbock, TX
Rotary International
Sanders Funeral Home, Lubbock, TX
Sheraton Santa Fe Inn, Shalako Ceremony,
Santa Fe, NM
South Plains Children’s Shelter, Lubbock, TX
South Plains Medical Association, Lubbock, TX
South Plains Physicians Society, Lubbock, TX
Texas Tech University, College of Human Sciences
Texas Tech University, Ranching Heritage Center
National Wildflower Research Center, Austin, TX
United States Coast Guard, Washington, DC

Lindenwood College, St. Charles, MO
Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX
Art Student’s League, New York, NY
Henry Hensche Cape Cod School of Painting, MA
Robert E. Wood Summer School of Painting, CA
National Portrait Seminars, New York, NY and Atlanta, GA

Submitted by Stephanie A. Reeves

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