Lloyd Blanks (Front Gallery IX – Silent Noon)

San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts Catalog

Accession no: 2005.3.4 Type of work: Textile, needlepoint

Permanent Collection

Artist/creator: Lloyd Walton Blanks
Variant forms of names: Lloyd Blanks
Born: 1922 Died: June 2002
Artist biography: Lloyd Blanks was born in 1922 near Abilene, Texas in the small town of Caps. He graduated in 1946 from McMurry College in Abilene with a major in art. He did 2 years of graduate study in painting at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque and taught painting and design at McMurry College for 5 ½ years. He moved to New York City in 1951, where he studied art and worked at the New School for Social Research. He became interested in the unique possibilities of needlepoint as a serious creative medium in the 1970’s and retired in 1985 to devote full time to his art.

Title of work: Front Gallery IX – Silent Noon
Date of item: 1980
Other markings/identifiers: On reverse: 3 white paper labels: (1): “56 Front Gallery IX – Silent Noon Nov 30/80 – Mar 14/81
33” x 18”
(2) “Marymount Manhattan College May ‘85”
(2): “New School Oct ‘82”
On front in lower left corner: woven into the piece is a grey square with light blue letters “LB 80” Underneath this box is woven in a symbol which looks like a “M” or a sideways “E”

Dimensions: 33 ¼” x 17 5/8” framed: 33 7/8” x 18 3/8” (83.82 x 45.72; 86.36 x 48.26 cm)
Description: Abstracted image of a porch front in silhouette looking out over a landscape. Porch is purple, sky isgreenish-blue, land is red and mesa in background is light purple.
Material: wool; cotton
Technique: needlepoint
Medium: Textile
Country of origin: U.S.

Artist’s statement about work: My grandmother called the porch that curved across the front of the farmhouse, the “frontgallery”. In that house I was born in West Texas a little before the days of the Dust Bowl. From herrocking chair at the front window, she watched the road and the horizon mostly for weather changes,and I learned from her to look at horizons. In my work now I often return to the “front gallery” of my early years for a frame of reference and to the horizons touched by the noonday sun and the summer twilight. I try to winnow a statement that will stand clear and valid, spanning and uniting my years, and I try to say these things with the pictorial language I know, a formalism of structure with the atmosphere of color. 1983, from a solo exhibit at The Textile Museum, Washington, D.C.

I felt that I had known the needlepoint process somewhere in my own past. I grew up in West Texas in the 1930’s, a place distinguished by wide open space and the slow movement of time. I remembered that as a child I had spent hours with graph paper, pencil shading every other square until I had covered the entire sheet. I had moved forward on the graph paper square by square, line by line, just as I was doing on the mesh canvas. The gradual movement from stitch to stitch also reminded me of farm work I had done during my teens . . . the chopping of crops, the plowing, and the heading of maize. That, too, went step by step, row by row, and I was always looking behind at what had been done and forward to what remained, until the field was covered. 1988, from an article in FiberArts

Condition: Good, from Deed of Gift, dated 5-27-05
Conservation future: Unframe and re-frame to see if there is a barrier between artwork and backing board

Provenance: Donated by Mark and Nancy Munden to SAMFA April 1, 2005Mark Munden is a nephew of Lloyd Blanks and executor of his estate.
Donor information: Mark and Nancy Munden
History of object: Donated to SAMFA by Mark Munden on April 1, 2005. Accepted by SAMFA, May 19, 2005
Exhibitions: San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, “Painting with Fiber: Lloyd W. Blanks,” 10-11-02 – 1-5-03
Marymount Manhattan College Gallery, New York, Solo Exhibit, 1985
New School for Social Research, New York, Solo Exhibit, “Front Gallery Series and Other Works in Wool,” 1982
Credit line: Mark and Nancy Munden

Cataloger name: Karen Zimmerly
Date: August 2, 2005
Sources used: Museum file