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Houston artist Dick Wray died early Sunday morning. The prolific, irascible painter’s public career spanned nearly 50 years. Born in Houston in 1933, Wray studied at the Kunstakademe, Dusseldorf, Germany, and UH’s School of Architecture. He began painting in 1959 and boasted that "I have shown every single year since 1959, no exception, to the present date. I have not missed one year. My bio’s every damn year."  Messy and omnivorous, Wray’s canvasses included anything and everything, bouncing between  gestural abstraction, mythic symbolism and magpie collage. In the 70s Wray, along with with Jim Love, Lucas Johnson, Harvey Bott, James Boynton, etc. helped construct the nascent Houston contemporary art scene. Said Wray of artmaking,"I have to come up with something new every single day. Every day, every day I’m challenged. It’s essential…like breathing." A service for Dick will be announced at a later date.

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1 Response

  1. Hills Snyder

    The title of the project is not limited to Casual Observer. It could just as easily be taken as Causal Observer. The ceremonies I participated in at Chavin in 2006 and 2009 did not involve ayahuasca. I did indeed characterize the feelings I felt in the presence Enrique and Wilma — the Shipibo ayahuasqueros I met in the jungle in 2008 — as divine caring, but the rest of that paragraph comes from Dan’s armchair, not mine. I’m sure he is paraphrasing what he thought I said about submerging. America, the entire continent, is pictured in the map — one of many details overlooked in this quick read. The title of the song Dan mentions is actually Song 44. True enough, it has been referred to as a murder ballad.

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