For Sale: A 1960s Pencil Sketch of City's Skyline By a Member of the Dallas Nine, Ed Bearden
|Via eBay seller "barbiehunter9"|
Before shooting Giant, director George Stevens asked the late Dallas artist and SMU art professor Ed Bearden to draw the film's storyboards. Stevens wanted a Texas native to conceive the characters visually in order to capture their authenticity. Bearden's pen portraits were enlarged and displayed on the set as a guide to makeup and costume crews. The artist also went to Marfa during shooting to sketch on the Giant set. Several of his drawings appeared with John Rosenfield's article on the Giant shoot in the Autumn 1956 Southwest Review.Bearden, born here in 1919, is no small footnote in Dallas's art history: He was among the misleadingly monikered Dallas Nine, a "small group of Dallas painters whose seminal body of art works is regionalist art in the best sense -- works that serve as description and definition of a particular time and place," as Patsy Swank wrote in this 1996 history-of that ran in D. Bearden wasn't among the initial group that showed at Fair Park in the early '30s, but his mentor, the legendary Jerry Bywaters, was. Bearden, who studied under Bywaters at SMU in the early '40s, would show at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts at Fair Park in '44, when Bywaters served as the museum's director. Four years later, Bearden himself began teaching art on the Hilltop.
Only last fall, the David Dike gallery on Fairmont displayed a "never-before-seen collection" of his works, dating from '40 to '80. And they continue to show up at auctions, here and abroad, his pieces going for a few to a couple thousand. And then there are these two pieces: An eBay seller from Brownsville has available, for the next few days, a skyline sketch dating back to the 1960s, available at the low, low price of $395. It was found at an estate sale; how lucky. It would make a nice accompaniment to this '66 offering: a panoramic view of the city painted for Arthur's, back when the Addison steak house was in its original McKinney Avenue location.