Art Never Dies

37th Annual Bosque Art Classic continues as prestigious showcase for Bosque Arts Center, exhibit opening night festivities planned for Sept. 10

CLIFTON – Captured, given life and color on canvas by an artist, objects, people, animals and landscapes in a specific moment of time are immortalized. Through the artist’s talent and skill, they live on to be admired for generations to come. As Classic master Leonardo Da Vinci said, “A beautiful body perishes, but a work of art dies not.”

The annual Bosque Arts Center’s Art Classic is a prestigious representational art show and sale that draws art lovers from far and wide, offering them a diversity of exceptional art to admire. In the 37 years the show has been in existence, the annual juried and judged art show and sale art show has grown and thrived thanks to the dedication of its art patrons to support the work of talented artists and has become synonymous with outstanding original representational art with a Country and Western focus. The exhibition kicks off Sept. 10 with the opening night sale, dinner and awards ceremony. 

This year, 532 pieces of art in different categories, from sculpture, to pastels, to water color and oils were discussed and weighed on significance and quality by the BAC Art Council and this year’s judge Cowboy Artist of America Mikel Donahue; and 182 were deemed worthy of being in the show.

The Art Council welcomes back artists like Matt Atkinson, Cindy Long, Lloyd Voges, Jean Olliver, Patricia Rohrbacher and many other masterly artists. The selected pieces are online available for viewing online at the Bosque Art Classic Gallery.

Donahue, an Oklahoma native is fresh off winning the Anne Marion Best of Show Award as well as multiple gold medals at the 2021 Cowboy Artists of America show in Fort Worth.

A member of the Cowboy Artists of America since 2014, Donahue is a self-taught artist best known for his impeccable depictions of cowboy life. His drawings and paintings portray ranchers and their livestock during the day-to-day ritual of sun-up to sun-down work on the ranch. What may seem as mundane chores are captured and translated through his artistic style into moments of meaning and reflection.

Born and raised in Tulsa, Donahue, was taught about life on the ranch by his paternal grandfather who raised cattle in northcentral Oklahoma. It was Donahue’s maternal grandfather who exposed him to western art at an early age with memorable trips to Tulsa’s Gilcrease Museum and what was then the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City.

Fascinated both by life on the ranch and the iconic art by the likes of Charlie Russell and Frederic Remington, as an adult, Donahue has become a perfect amalgam of his influences with a life breeding racing quarter horses with his wife Christie on their place outside Broken Arrow.

The BAC Art Classic is a treat for art lovers, allowing them to see exceptional art up close and personal; allow them a chance to allow the art wash away from the soul the dust of everyday life – as Master Pablo Picasso said. For the artists, the show is a validation of their talent, skills and place in the representational art world.

First and second place awards are given to pieces in each category.  Additional awards include the Art Patrons Purchase Award, New Entrant Award, the Boren-Selvidge Award and the coveted John Steven Jones Purchase Award. The purchase awarded art becomes a part of the Bosque Arts Center's exclusive and beautiful permanent collection in the Roland Jones Memorial Gallery on the second floor of the BAC.  This collection is displayed throughout the year for the public to enjoy for free.

Past winners of the distinguished John Steven Jones Purchase Award include Matt Atkinson, Joseph Barbieri, Cheryl Harley-Volz, Kathy Tate, Mikel Donahue, William Schneider, Jeff Segler, Don Weller, Romel de la Torre, Xiang Zhang and many others.  

After the opening weekend reception and sale, the remaining pieces will become available online beginning Monday, Sept. 12-Saturday, Sept. 24. The exhibition is open free to the public September 11-24: Sunday, September 11:  11 a.m.-2 p.m.; Monday-Friday, September 12-16, 19-23:  10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturdays, September 17 & 24:  10 a.m.-4 p.m.


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