Who’s the Boss

Today is national Boss’s Day so we decided to look back on the legacy of one of the DMA’s former bosses, Jerry Bywaters.

Jerry Bywaters with his painting On the Ranch

Jerry Bywaters was the figurehead for the Dallas Nine, a group of artists from the 1930s who all focused on individual styles while working together to present unique aspects of the Texas landscape. Throughout his career, he was an art critic, professor, museum director, and, of course, a Texas artist. From 1943 to 1964, Bywaters served as Director of the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, which would merge with the Dallas Museum for Contemporary Arts to create the DMA in 1963. He believed museums should be responsible for inspiring and cultivating art within the community, something that is still very important to the DMA today.

Jerry Bywaters, Self-Portrait, 1935, oil on Masonite, Dallas Museum of Art, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Duncan E. Boeckman in honor of Mrs. Eugene McDermott, 1990.5

The DMA is fortunate to have a number of his works in our collection, including his paintings Share Cropper (1937) and On the Ranch (1941). Celebrate one of the DMA’s bosses with a visit to Level 4 to view Bywaters’, and his contemporaries’, work.

Kimberly Daniell is the Senior Manager of Communications, Public Affairs, and Social Media Strategy at the DMA.


1 Response to “Who’s the Boss”

  1. 1 Samuel Blain October 16, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    Jerry took me under his wing while I was at North Texas State University (Denton); and, made me his new field rep while he served as the Director of the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art’s “Texas Project”. Dr. Francine Carraro (author of “Jerry Bywaters: A Life in Art”) and Marla Redelsperger had been his field reps before I entered the picture. Then, he brought me into Southern Methodist University’s art history graduate program, where I served as his graduate assistant while we worked on the “Texas Project” and taught the undergraduate and graduate level course, “Art History of the Southwest”. He was a remarkable man and a wonderful friend! Very pleased to see the Dallas Museum of Art has honored him with this post, today.

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