Posts Tagged ‘ Carl Eytel ’

Cabot Yerxa: The Theosophist-Artist of Miracle Hill

One hundred years ago Cabot Yerxa scraped a dugout into a clay bank, claiming a 160-acre homestead on a patch of sand alive with wind and water spirits. (Today we call them energy vortexes.) He spent $10 on a burro, Merry Xmas, then later built a Hopi-style pueblo of 35 rooms, now one of the most beloved handmade houses in California. Desert-dwellers know this story. But you might not know that Cabot traveled with a sketchbook and paints strapped to his burro. You might not know that he was pals with Jimmy Swinnerton, Agnes Pelton and Carl Eytel, or that…

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Burt Procter: A Cowboy Modernist on Miracle Hill

Up on Miracle Hill in Desert Hot Springs, the pueblo-builder and snake-tender Cabot Yerxa took painting lessons from his neighbor, Burt Procter, while Procter’s young daughter Ginny played on a packed dirt floor, sprinkled down with water to keep it cool. Procter had purchased land from Cabot and planned to build a cabin next door to the Pueblo, now a tourist attraction. He would be the first settler in Cabot’s dreamed-of arts colony. While the colony never materialized, Ginny and her parents often drove out from Corona del Mar in the early 1950s to camp on their land and visit…

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The Smoketree Artists’ Historic Home Tour

The Smoketree Artists’ Historic Home Tour

This article first appeared in Palm Springs Life, Winter/Spring 2013 Any Palm Springs visitor can board a bus and tour Liberace’s pad. With only a little more effort, you can see the view that inspired mystical visions from Agnes Pelton’s back porch or the Cathedral City home where R. Brownell McGrew came to love the desert so much he was later dubbed Rembrandt Under a Smoketree. Some of California’s greatest artists once lived in the Coachella Valley. More and more, art lovers are recognizing the power artists’ former homes and environs hold in telling the story of American art. As…

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New Sven-Ska Photos, Helen Lundeberg, Agnes Martin, William Bartko and more

New Sven-Ska Photos, Helen Lundeberg, Agnes Martin, William Bartko and more

Two major retrospectives of women who drew inspiration from the desert are on view currently in Southern California. Agnes Martin came to New Mexico in the late 1960s and lived alone in an adobe hut on a mesa. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is now displaying the first large-scale retrospective of her minimalist work, April 24-Sept 11, 2016. Martin’s biographer, Nancy Princenthal, cautioned in a recent LA Times interview that we shouldn’t think of Martin as a clichéd desert mystic. Yet she clearly had a love for austerity and open space.  Anyone who has exulted in desert distances…

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Toenjes on the Mojave, Eytel’s Canteen, Water Tank Art and More

Toenjes on the Mojave, Eytel’s Canteen, Water Tank Art and More

Palm Springs artist and archaeologist James Toenjes is acting as caretaker and resident painter at the historic OX Ranch in Lanfair Valley, as he works on archaeology jobs in the Mojave National Preserve. His adventure has already yielded fine paintings of the little-visited and historic Preserve. For a video introduction to Jim’s new digs, and to see his paintings of the bunk house, the New York Mountains and the Piute Mountains from his backdoor, visit: http://painthedesert.com/ For more on Jim, see: http://www.californiadesertart.com/?p=1405 You can also see Jim’s work at Terry Master’s Desert Painter Gallery in Palm Springs  Carl Eytel’s Canteen…

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Tony Foster, Carl Borg and More

With Desertscapes behind us for another year, the theme of desert-influenced art continues in these exhibits locally and elsewhere in the West. Sacred Places—Watercolour Diaries from the American Southwest opens  May 18, 2012 (through July 14) at Gerald Peters Gallery in Santa Fe. British adventure artist Tony Foster models all the “best practices” for plein air painters. He travels far into the wilderness, hiking 12-14 miles a day, in the style of early exploration artists. He keeps an expedition-style log and annotates his paintings with journal entries, as well as quartz crystals, glass beads, quail feathers, arrowheads and sand–all collected…

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