Arts History Update for early May 2015

24 Apr

Arts History Update for early May 2015 by David Cummins

April 24, 2015

Dear Playa Landowners, Naturalists, Agency folks, and Interested Public:

Since the last Field Day back in October, the uplands around the Playa Classroom were covered in tall grass and giant kochia weeds, thanks to 20 inches of rainfall over last summer and fall. After the winter snows, it seemed best to remove all that biomass (or risk a wildfire) from a management standpoint, so on April 8th, those uplands were swathed and baled. The harvest yielded 38 round bales! Even better, the landscape is in amazingly good shape for the spring months.

I invite you to attend our Playa Management Field Day on Friday, May 15th from 8:45am-1:15pm in Nazareth, Texas (3 weeks from today). We will start out at the Home Mercantile Building, in downtown Nazareth, Texas (101 Second Street)…with coffee, refreshments, restrooms, and two short presentations. By 10am, we will drive ¾ of a mile south of the Hwy 86 and FM 168 intersection to the Ogallala Commons Playa Classroom. Next, there will be a walk-around in small groups to assess key indicators for playa ecosystem health, under the direction of Manuel DeLeon (a wetlands specialist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service). We will have another treat to wrap up the outdoors session: a presentation on playa amphibians (with live specimens: toads, salamanders, frogs, etc.) by Robert Martin from Santa Fe, NM.

Back at the Home Mercantile, we will enjoy a home-cooked meal of German sausage and garden greens with dessert. We will also have a presentation on playa ecosystem management at Muleshoe, Buffalo Lake, and Grulla National Wildlife Refuges by Melanie Hartman, USFWS, from Happy, TX.

There is $10 fee for lunch and refreshments. Anyone attending this Playa Management Day needs to contact Darryl Birkenfeld at 806-945-2255 (or to insure an accurate lunch count.

The Field Day is sponsored by Ogallala Commons and the Dixon Water Foundation. Those attending are asked to wear appropriate clothing, footwear, and a hat.

After we adjourn at 1:15pm, anyone is invited to come over to our house for a tour of the rainwater harvesting, raised-bed gardening, etc., until 2pm. Please share this invitation and the agenda on the next page with others who might want to attend.

Our next Playa Management Day will be on Thursday, June 25th, 9am-1pm, just southwest of Edmonson, TX (Hale County), at Mark Hilliard’s playa.

Best regards,

Darryl Birkenfeld, Ph.D.,
Director, Ogallala Commons

Playa Management Day

Friday, May 15, 2015

Home Mercantile Building & OC Playa Classroom Nazareth, Texas

8:45am – 1:30pm

8:45am Registration and Light refreshments at Home Mercantile Building

(corner of Second & Leo Streets, located between Holy Family Church and Nazareth Schools)

9:00am Welcome & Overview of Past & Current Conditions at the Playa

Darryl Birkenfeld, Director, Ogallala Commons, and playa landowner

9:20am Assessing Playa Watersheds: What are Key Indicators?

Manuel DeLeon, Wetlands Specialist, USDA-NRCS, Lubbock, TX

9:40am Select Teams (small groups) and Assignments

10am Arrive at OC Playa Classroom (3.4 miles south of Nazareth on FM 168) Group Walks to conduct assignments

10:40am Group Reports & Discussion (Playa Classroom)

Darryl Birkenfeld

11:00am Building Soil Health & Drought Resilience in Playa Wetlands

Manuel DeLeon

11:30pm Playa Amphibians in Southern High Plains Playas (with live specimens)

Robert Martin, OC New Mexico Coordinator, Santa Fe, NM

12:10 Return to Home Mercantile

12:20pm Home-Cooked Lunch: German sausage, vegetables, and dessert

12:45pm Playa Ecosystem Management at Buffalo Lake, Muleshoe & Grulla NWR

Melanie Hartman, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Happy, TX

1:15pm Adjourn

A mini-playa exists in Lubbock on Texas Tech University land northeast corner of 4th street and Quaker Avenue under lock and key, and I toured it several years ago with a Texas Tech faculty member, but real estate development nearby has so encroached that it is not a fully functional playa like the one south of Nazareth in the invitation above. Please consider registering and attending this active tour of a fully functional playa on May 15. All the former playas in the Lubbock area are now just depressions with standing water at times, since so much of the playa habitat has been devoted to real estate development and farms.

Of course visiting and exploring an active playa with expert guides is the main thing, but folks, if you get an invitation to to eat home-prepared German sausage in Nazareth Texas and you recall the German-Americans who settled there with those recipes from the old country, strap on your stompin shoes and get to Nazareth for some pleasurable vittles.


Where does a political campaign begin? We know it ends with massive staged rallies broadcast nationwide much like a Hollywood production. It began for Hillary Clinton in LeClaire Iowa in the first week of her April 2015 campaign when she shook hands “pressed the flesh” at the Jones Street Java House, a local coffee shop. Sometimes at such events a throng of reporters and photographers outnumber the people around the tables in her public and unannounced visits.

Whatever one’s politics or lack of politics, meeting a presidential candidate in person is always remembered, as is true for all celebrities who command a national press and keep popping up when we read newspapers, magazines, or television “news”. One wonders what those Iowans felt when they met Ms. Clinton.

In 1992 in Lubbock Texas when Bill Clinton was a presidential candidate with a campaign schedule that did not include Lubbock, it was announced that his wife Hillary Clinton, a lawyer in the Rose Law Firm in Little Rock Arkansas, would travel to Lubbock on her husband’s behalf. She went, and I went, to Lala’s a Tex-Mex Restaurant1 on Broadway Street in the 1100 block and a crowd of about 70 people heard her speak about Bill and why he might make a good president for the country. I haven’t met her in person since then, and don’t expect to, but I remember her visit vividly and imagine LeClaire Iowans at their coffee shop. I also imagine how many or how few Iowans will go to events and actually meet in person two or three or more candidates for president. How will they compare them, and on what bases or characteristics? It’s obvious, isn’t it, that this is an electoral process but not a representative process. It describes how a president is ultimately elected, but that president is not in fact a representative of anyone in LeClaire or Lubbock. He or she may act for them or by their leave or in their name, but is not acting as their representative. We expect more and better from them than we often deliver for ourselves.

That said, I’m no fan of books published by presidential candidates the year or two prior to their entry into a political campaign. They seem like puff pieces designed to self-validate the importance of the author and his/her appropriate entry into the campaign. Two of those are Hillary Rodham Clinton, Hard Choices (Simon & Schuster 2014) Lubbock Public Library 635 pages 3 copies 328.73092 CLIN and Jeb Bush & Clint Bolick, Immigration Wars: Forging An American Solution (Threshold Editions 2013) Texas Tech Library JV 6483.B84. They never state objectively what the author did or didn’t do relative to the issues the author pontificates about. There is thus no glimmer of walking their talk and thereby an expectation that they won’t in the future.


NBA [National Basketball Association] Western Conference and Eastern Conference Playoffs began April 18, 2015

15 teams in each Conference and, after an 82 game season, seven of those teams are done and licking their wounds, and the remaining eight playoff teams are:

Eastern Conference: # 1 Atlanta Hawks 60-22 v. # 8 Brooklyn Nets 38-44, # 4 Toronto Raptors 49-33 v. # 5 Washington Wizards 46-36, # 3 Chicago Bulls 50-32 v. # 6 Milwaukee Bucks 41-41 and # 2 Cleveland Cavaliers 53-29 v. # 7 Boston Celtics 40-42

Western Conference # 1 Golden State Warriors 67-15 v. # 8 New Orleans Pelicans 45-37, # 5 Memphis Grizzlies 55-27 v. # 4 Portland Trail Blazers 51-31, # 3 Los Angeles Clippers 56-26 v. # 6 San Antonio Spurs 55-27, and # 2 Houston Rockets 56-26 v. # 7 Dallas Mavericks 50-32 Round one is first team to win 4 games. Round three will produce Conference winners and Round Four will produce an NBA Champion. The better record during the season determines home court advantage as a round is played. The best teams during the season do not always win in the playoffs, so get out your scorecard, pencil with eraser, and televisions aglow.


The Bowerbird Panhandle Art Review is an online regional art journal founded by Hannah Dean of Slaton Texas e-mail phone 575-308-9737


Daniel Albright, Putting Modernism Together: Literature Music and Art 1872-1927 (Hopkins Studies in Modernism) (Johns Hopkins University Press 2015) $54 hardcover $30 paperback


Jay Friedlander, Strategic Sustainability: Creating Abundance, American Management Association Playbook: Your Source for Practical Work Solutions, uses the Abundance Sustainability Cycle overlap between profits, people and planet as the place where all the work done there is a win-win for everyone. Only the business’s competitor that is not doing it, is a loser and then only relatively speaking Many businesses mimic their competitors who get out front.


Art League of West Texas Foundation has its Spring Membership Show on exhibit at the Buddy Holly Center Fine Arts Gallery 1801 Crickets Avenue April 17-May 24, 2015. The juror is James C. Watkins, internationally known ceramic artist. West Texas Watercolor Society has its Spring Show at Buddy Holly Center May 1-June 14, 2015. The juror is Candace Keller professor of art and curator at Wayland Baptist University in Plainview.


Jeff Dell, artist in residence print maker at CASP Charles Adams Studio Project 5th Street & Avenue J Gallery, is leaving town after a five month residency. Closing reception free event for the public is Saturday April 25 from 1:00-6:00 pm. His specialty is screen prints so expect to see some really cool stuff. He’s going back to San Marcos where he is a Professor of Studio Art Printmaking at Texas State University


Didn’t get published in Iron Horse Literary Journal? now there’s an additional journal by the English Department at Texas Tech University, Harbinger Literary Magazine, that invites undergraduates to make submissions for publication. Its first release party is Friday May 1, 2015 at 3:00 – 4:00 pm in English Philosophy Departments Building Room 106. Free food and drink. Pick up a copy of the magazine.

Third annual Iron Horse Literary Journal Film Fest of short-short films is Wednesday April 29 at 7:30 pm at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema $9 for public, free with Texas Tech ID!fest/c1xxg


1Lala and Conrado Cavazos owned this restaurant and closed it upon their retirement and moved to the Lower Rio

Grande Valley

Arts History Update for late April 2015

17 Apr

Arts History Update for late April 2015 by David Cummins
Joyce Runyan, abstract water-media painter who lives and works in Ransom Canyon has twelve pieces at Pioneer Hotel Condominiums 1204 Broadway Street in downtown Lubbock. They enhance the vitality of the lobby entrance and The West Table restaurant off the lobby in the building!

What you ask is water-media? She uses acrylic paint that is water soluble and depending on dilution and modification by gels, media or paste it can resemble watercolor painting, an oil painting, or be distinctive from either. The West Texas Watercolor Society includes water-media painters and Runyan is a former president.

If you haven’t yet eaten at The West Table, reservations are preferred and can be made by phone or online, it’s closed Monday and Tuesday, open lunch Wednesday – Friday 11:00 – 2:00 pm, open dinner Wednesday – Saturday 5:00 – 9:00 pm, open Sunday for Brunch 11:00 – 2:00 pm and Supper 5:00 – 9:00 pm. The best value is Sunday Supper at 6:30 or 7:00 pm seatings pre-set four course meal for $25. The bar is open from 11:00 am to closing. Dirk West and Mary Ruth West’s grandson Cameron West and his wife are owners of and chefs at The West Table.

Here are nine paintings by Runyan to entice you to visit


James Wines’s Green Architecture showrooms, nine in total, are now either demolished or renovated beyond recognition except for the so-called Forest Building showroom for Best Products in 1980 on Quioccasin Road in Richmond Virginia. It’s now owned by West End Presbyterian Church and here is its website page on the structure Wines is age 83 and is founder and president of SITE a New York City based architecture and environmental arts organization.


Now that March Madness ended and college basketball is over, is the NBA National Basketball Association enough for your addiction? If not, be aware that the NBA started a Development League and in the Western Conference Southwest Division of that League are four teams Oklahoma City Blue, Texas Legends, Austin Spurs, and Rio Grande Valley Vipers. This is minor league professional basketball. Legends are associated with the Dallas Mavericks, Spurs are associated with San Antonio Spurs, and Vipers are associated with the Houston Rockets.

Venues: Texas Legends play at Dr Pepper Arena Frisco Texas, Austin Spurs play at Cedar Park Center, Cedar Park Texas and Rio Grande Valley Vipers play at State Farm Arena Hidalgo Texas. Deep into the season Legends are 22-28, Spurs are 32-28, and Vipers are 27-23. There are 18 teams in the Development League from small markets like Maine Red Claws in Portland Maine, Sioux Falls Skyforce in South Dakota, and Bakersfield Jam in Bakersfield California. The playoffs are going on right now and the Austin Spurs played the Bakersfield Jam on April 7, 11 and 12. Jam beat the Spurs on April 7 but the Spurs won the second and third games and are in the second round. The other three match-ups in the playoffs are Maine v. Fort Wayne, Sioux Falls v. Canton, and Santa Cruz v. Oklahoma City. Series to advance are best two out of three games. Santa Cruz Warriors won in first round and meets Austin Spurs on Sunday April 19 at 5:00 pm TV-ESPNU at Cedar Park and Tuesday April 21 at 8:30 pm TV-ESPNU at Santa Cruz California. Game three in Santa Cruz on Thursday if they are tied 1-1.

WNBA Women’s National Basketball Association schedule begins June 5 through September so as to be off-season relative to the Men’s NBA play and provide year round opportunities to enjoy professional basketball. Teams include the San Antonio Stars The draft for new players will be April 16, 2015


Super Geeks Lubbock on 66th Street promises a free video tutorial on the Microsoft Windows 10 Operating System that is currently in Beta testing. Here is the You Tube Channel for Super Geeks for you to access when the video comes online

Western Federation of Watercolor Societies 40th Annual Exhibition is April 16, 2015 – July 15, 2015 at Texas Tech Museum and the host Society is West Texas Watercolor Society represented by Carol Peterson who may be contacted at or by phone 806-535-6137. On January 28 the submissions were accepted or rejected and paintings were sent in March. Linda Baker will juror the show from April 27 – May 1, 2015 and winners will be notified by May 4. Delegates to the annual Exhibition will arrive on May 28 and depart on June 1. Western Federation Societies can be found in eight states

Here are images of the entries in the Exhibition that you can view as a slide show.

West Texas Watercolor Society offices are at the YWCA Legacy Event Center downtown Lubbock 14th Street and Avenue O.


Human Rights Art Exhibition from the Collection at South Texas College, McAllen Texas and also from South Plains artists, goes on exhibit April 23 through June 10, 2015 at International Cultural Center at Texas Tech University. The opening reception is Thursday April 23 from 4:30-6:30 pm during which a film Benches will be shown in the Auditorium while Kristi Humphries will provide a performance.

Trafficked by Lynn M. Randolph of Houston Texas is one of the paintings exhibited

There is a half-scale seaworthy replica of La Salle’s ship La Belle [feminine beautiful] that is called La Petite [small] Belle docked alongside the Palacios Texas shrimping fleet, and artifacts recovered i.e. excavated from, the seabed of the shipwrecked La Belle in Matagorda Bay in 1686, appear in a seven Gulf Coast museums including City By The Sea Museum in Palacios

La Salle is Rene-Robert Cavalier, Sieur de La Salle,_Sieur_de_La_Salle the French explorer who died age 43 inland the next year 1687 near present day Huntsville Texas.

A marvelous temporary exhibit La Belle The Ship That Changed History is at the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin October 25, 2014 – May 17, 2015 and the permanent exhibit on La Belle will go up in November 2015 while the temporary exhibit begins traveling the state.

La Salle had previously in 1685 started a colony at the mis-named Fort St Louis on a bluff overlooking Garcitas Creek before it emptied into Lavaca Bay on the Gulf Coast of later to be Texas. It was just an outpost amid hostile natives, the Karankawa Indians. It was La Salle’s attempt to beat the English and Spanish to this area he thought to be near the mouth of the Mississippi River, his goal, and La Salle left the outpost to travel inland to gain relief for his people in January 1687. At that point there were only 50 men women and children at the outpost and a Karankawa Indian attack ended their colonization in 1689. Spanish explorers would find the site of the former French colony and build a Spanish outpost over it Evidence of Karankawa occupation also was present in the area, so it’s quite historic. The Spanish De Leon Expedition found the abandoned and empty colony and made this map of it after burying the cannon because they anticipated returning to the area and using the cannon for a Spanish outpost’s defense. The Spanish burned the French-constructed buildings to the ground.

As we think about La Salle’s early exploration we are reminded of Alver Nunez Cabeza de Vaca’s ill-fated Narvaez Expedition of 1527 and his being rescued and enslaved by Karankawa Indians along the Texas Gulf Coast Early European entrance into Texas is an amazing story.

A fiction is Miles Arceneaux, La Salle’s Ghost: A Novel (Stephen F. Austin University Press 2013). The author Arceneaux is a pen name for three writers who collaborate on fiction such as this, namely Brent Douglass, John T. Davis, and James R. Dennis. $15.45 paperback $10 e-book. Brent Douglass’s parents reside in Lubbock Texas.


Congress mistakenly passed a Medicare Reform Payment Plan including a sustainable growth rate formula SGR and on April 14, 2015 repealed it, averting a 21 % across the board reduction in Medicare’s physician fees for covered services. There are complexities with regard to appropriately compensating physicians while reducing the growth rate of health care costs, and Congress now realizes, belatedly, that a simple meat-ax approach won’t work

The reality is that ever since 2002 Congress has adjusted the reality of payment reductions that the SGR would have imposed, so the SGR has been an unenforced specter for many years. It’s best to get rid of it and take careful account of reality.


In 1913 before The Great War commenced, an all African-American Army National Guard Regiment was formed, the 15th Infantry Regiment, New York. Most of its members lived in New York City or the NYC area. It continued to train as an Army National Guard Regiment after The Great War began in 1914 but the United States did not enter the War until 1917 and The American Army Expeditionary Forces under General John J. “Black Jack” Pershing were posted to Europe. Initially the 15th became the US Army 369th Infantry Regiment and were deployed alongside the Expeditionary Forces but not incorporated within them, only being used as stevedores and support troops. Pershing had insisted that the American Army Expeditionary Forces not be incorporated into the commands and troops in the field of the French, English and Canadian Armies but rather be assigned their own sector and fight under their own military commanders. He did allow for the 369th Infantry Regiment to be assigned to the French Army in its sector of battle at Champagne-Marne and at Meuse-Argonne and their French commanders referred to the regiment as The Men of Bronze, and awarded medals and badges for bravery and military accomplishment.

Bill Miles, Men of Bronze (documentary film 60 minutes black and white 1977)

Max Brooks, The Harlem Hellfighters (Turtleback Books hardcover Broadway Books paperback 2014) is a 257 page graphic novel illustrated by Caanan Whte, that is a fictionalized account of the 369th Infantry Regiment from its inception. Max Brooks is the son of Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft well-known film actors. Lubbock Public Library GEN FIC BROO two copies. $23.48 hardcover $14.13 paperback $10 e-book.

Max Brooks will show portions of the documentary film and discuss his graphic novel on the Texas Tech University campus on Wednesday April 22 at 6:30 – 7:30 pm at the School of Law Lanier Professional Development Center Auditorium. A free event.

Sony Pictures purchased the film rights to the graphic novel and is producing a movie to be released in 2016.

Arts History Update for mid April 2015

9 Apr

Arts History Update for mid April 2015 by David Cummins

The Great War [World War I] that ended in 1918 brought to an end the Austria-Hungary Empire and the Ottoman Empire. As for the latter, a century on, we understand that transition better. Leila Tarazi Fawaz, A Land of Aching Hearts: The Middle East in the Great War (Harvard University Press 2014) Texas Tech Library D524.7.M53 F39 hardcover $22.50 e-book $19.25
“The Great War of 1914-1918 reshaped the political geography of the Middle East, destroying a centuries-old, multinational empire, while creating the nation-states of today’s Middle East. The political aftermath of the war has proven as heavily contested as the military battles that shaped the conflict. After a century of change, however, the social experience of the region’s inhabitants during those four trying years has faded into the background. This book illuminates the challenges of the civilians who endured and the soldiers who fought through four calamitous years. It is a story of resilience in the midst of hardship, courage in the face of death, and triumph in the cauldron of battle. In this telling, the First World War is not just a global event, but a personal story running across regions and along fronts. From soldiers encountering new worlds on distant battlefields to civilians staving off hunger at home and refugees escaping persecution abroad, the war profoundly upended the social identities and historical memories of the region. For these reasons, and due to the political settlement that followed, World War I stands as the defining moment that shaped the direction of the Middle East for the next 100 years. This social history testifies to the resourcefulness of the people of the region, in particular those of Greater Syria, investigates their experiences, and serves as a foundation for understanding the Great War’s enduring legacy”-

and Eugene Rogan, The Fall of the Ottomans: The Great War in the Middle East (Basic Books 2015) In 1914 the Ottoman Empire was depleted of men and resources after years of war against Balkan nationalist and Italian forces. But in the aftermath of the assassination in Sarajevo, the powers of Europe were sliding inexorably toward war, and not even the Middle East could escape the vast and enduring consequences of one of the most destructive conflicts in human history. The Great War spelled the end of the Ottomans, unleashing powerful forces that would forever change the face of the Middle East.

In The Fall of the Ottomans, award-winning historian Eugene Rogan brings the First World War and its immediate aftermath in the Middle East to vivid life, uncovering the often ignored story of the region’s crucial role in the conflict. Bolstered by German money, arms, and military advisors, the Ottomans took on the Russian, British, and French forces, and tried to provoke Jihad against the Allies in their Muslim colonies. Unlike the static killing fields of the Western Front, the war in the Middle East was fast-moving and unpredictable, with the Turks inflicting decisive defeats on the Entente in Gallipoli, Mesopotamia, and Gaza before the tide of battle turned in the Allies’ favor. The great cities of Baghdad, Jerusalem, and, finally, Damascus fell to invading armies before the Ottomans agreed to an armistice in 1918.

The postwar settlement led to the partition of Ottoman lands between the victorious powers, and laid the groundwork for the ongoing conflicts that continue to plague the modern Arab world. A sweeping narrative of battles and political intrigue from Gallipoli to Arabia, The Fall of the Ottomansis essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the Great War and the making of the modern Middle East.
hardcover $27.64 e-book $16.19

Karnig Panian, Goodbye, Antoura: A Memoir of the Armenian Genocide (Stanford University Press 2015) $18.63 e-book $12.50 When World War I began, Karnig Panian was only five years old, living among his fellow Armenians in the Anatolian village of Gurin. Four years later, American aid workers found him at an orphanage in Antoura, Lebanon. He was among nearly 1,000 Armenian and 400 Kurdish children who had been abandoned by the Turkish administrators, left to survive at the orphanage without adult care.

This memoir offers the extraordinary story of what he endured in those years—as his people were deported from their Armenian community, as his family died in a refugee camp in the deserts of Syria, as he survived hunger and mistreatment in the orphanage. The Antoura orphanage was another project of the Armenian genocide: its administrators, some benign and some cruel, sought to transform the children into Turks by changing their Armenian names, forcing them to speak Turkish, and erasing their history.

Panian’s memoir is a full-throated story of loss, resistance, and survival, but told without bitterness or sentimentality. His story shows us how even young children recognize injustice and can organize against it, how they can form a sense of identity that they will fight to maintain. He paints a painfully rich and detailed picture of the lives and agency of Armenian orphans during the darkest days of World War I. Ultimately, Karnig Panian survived the Armenian genocide and the deprivations that followed. Goodbye, Antoura assures us of how humanity, once denied, can be again reclaimed. and Ronald Grigor Suny, “They Can Live in the Desert But Nowhere Else”: A History of the Armenian Genocide (Princeton University Press 2015) $24.92 e-book $19.25 Starting in early 1915, the Ottoman Turks began deporting and killing hundreds of thousands of Armenians in the first major genocide of the twentieth century. By the end of the First World War, the number of Armenians in what would become Turkey had been reduced by ninety percent—more than a million people. A century later, the Armenian Genocide remains controversial but relatively unknown, overshadowed by later slaughters and the chasm separating Turkish and Armenian versions of events. In this definitive narrative history, Ronald Suny cuts through nationalist myths, propaganda, and denial to provide an unmatched account of when, how, and why the atrocities of 1915–16 were committed.
As it lost territory during the war, the Ottoman Empire was becoming a more homogenous Turkic-Muslim state, but it still contained large non-Muslim communities, including the Christian Armenians. The Young Turk leaders of the empire believed that the Armenians were internal enemies secretly allied to Russia and plotting to win an independent state. Suny shows that the great majority of Armenians were in truth loyal subjects who wanted to remain in the empire. But the Young Turks, steeped in imperial anxiety and anti-Armenian bias, became convinced that the survival of the state depended on the elimination of the Armenians. Suny is the first to explore the psychological factors as well as the international and domestic events that helped lead to genocide.
Drawing on archival documents and eyewitness accounts, this is an unforgettable chronicle of a cataclysm that set a tragic pattern for a century of genocide and crimes against humanity.
Leonard Barkan, Michelangelo: A Life On Paper (Princeton University Press 2010) $49.50 publisher $31 hardcover $22.59 like new condition ABE Books Michelangelo is best known for great artistic achievements such as the Sistine ceiling, the David, the Pietà, and the dome of St. Peter’s. Yet throughout his seventy-five year career, he was engaged in another artistic act that until now has been largely overlooked: he not only filled hundreds of sheets of paper with exquisite drawings, sketches, and doodles, but also, on fully a third of these sheets, composed his own words. Here we can read the artist’s marginal notes to his most enduring masterpieces; workaday memos to assistants and pupils; poetry and letters; and achingly personal expressions of ambition and despair surely meant for nobody’s eyes but his own. Michelangelo: A Life on Paper is the first book to examine this intriguing interplay of words and images, providing insight into his life and work as never before.
This sumptuous volume brings together more than two hundred stunning, museum-quality reproductions of Michelangelo’s most private papers, many in color. Accompanying them is Leonard Barkan’s vivid narrative, which explains the important role the written word played in the artist’s monumental public output. What emerges is a wealth of startling juxtapositions: perfectly inscribed sonnets and tantalizing fragments, such as “Have patience, love me, sufficient consolation”; careful notations listing money spent for chickens, oxen, and funeral rites for the artist’s father; a beautiful drawing of a Madonna and child next to a mock love poem that begins, “You have a face sweeter than boiled grape juice, and a snail seems to have passed over it.” Magnificently illustrated and superbly detailed, this book provides a rare and intimate look at how Michelangelo’s artistic genius expressed itself in words as well as pictures.

Audit a Fall semester course? Perhaps …. Seminar in 20th Century Music MUHL 4300-003 meets on Tuesdays 9:30 – 10:50 am weekly in Music Building Room 214 beginning August 25 2015 by Dr. Christopher J. Smith

or Frank Zappa, bandleader, songwriter, film composer, and political activist MUHL 4300-005 meets on Tuesdays 12:30 -1:50 pm weekly in Music Building Room 209 beginning August 25, 2015 by Dr. Christopher J. Smith.

Contact Texas Tech University Registrar/Bursar’s Office for details on auditing in West Hall on campus or phone 806-742-3661.

Booklife by Publishers Weekly is a subset for writers to assist in the multi-step process of creating, publishing, marketing and managing one’s book or other publishable creation. Among other things the site includes a Services Directory so you can shop, for free, for the names of people to help you on

1. editing
2. art and design
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5. web design
6. social media
7. promotion and public relations
8. agent
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10. business matters

On April 1, 2015 Governor Jerry Brown traveled 93 miles east of Sacramento on US Highway 50 to Echo Summit mountain pass 7,382 feet high in the Sierra Nevada mountains at a spot that at this time of year would normally have five feet of snow pack, but he stood in a grassy meadow because the drought in California will be extended due to a record low snowfall in the Sierra. The governor announced new and more water restrictions and a required 25% reduction in water usage by state and local government agencies including schools and colleges. It’s sensible and needed and it helps to gain voluntary compliance by private companies and individuals when the state and local governments get out front and bite the bullet on substantial restrictions. The point at which he spoke is very close to Echo Lake and the South Lake Tahoe community.

About 150 years ago this pass, then called Johnson Pass, was sixty miles west of the Comstock Lode silver mines operational from 1859 near present day Virginia City Nevada in then western Utah Territory.


Can we talk about computer operating systems? Much media and advertising communications use scare tactics and make things sound startling or difficult, unless of course we purchase what the communicator wants us to purchase. Recent announcements that Microsoft stopped providing mainstream support for Microsoft Windows 7 Operating System, has caused some concern with Windows 7 OS users. Not to panic. Here’s the real story, a lot less concerning to most people.

Microsoft’s current operating system is Windows 8 and its next operating system Windows 10 is in Beta testing and its release is scheduled for late 2015. What about users of Windows 7 operating system? Mainstream support on it was stopped several months ago in January 2015 but that is of concern to only a few people because all that means is that no new features for devices using that operating system will be forthcoming and the Help Desk free calls for servicing is shut down. Windows 7 operating systems will continue to receive the all-important security fixes and extended support from Microsoft through 2019, five more years. It is true that in 2020 and afterward the use of the Windows 7 operating system devices will be risky unless we have purchased an add-on real time security system to keep the system and device clean. Calm yourself if you, like me, are a user of a Windows 7 operating system and you like its operations and don’t wish to be forced to adjust at some expense.

What is the new Windows 10 operating system? It’s designed to replace the miscalculation Microsoft made when it introduced Microsoft 8 that put a tablet and smart phone touchscreen interface on its PC and laptop operating system. Customers went frantic and complained so operating system patches were sent out to make that interface optional and one could use Windows 8 with a keyboard and mouse-operated cursor technique for operating it, or one could switch on the touchscreen interface and use it as one normally uses a tablet or smart phone.

The new Windows 10 will naturally provide optional ways for users to operate the device, but it has built an advanced system that will look one way when it is being used as a touchscreen device like a smart phone or tablet, and look another way when used as a PC or laptop. Further, while using in one interface, a window on the monitor/display can show the same page or another page in the other interface, so both interfaces can be operational simultaneously. For those people who have a convertible laptop or tablet the user has the choice to toggle on or off the two interfaces and techniques for operation. Microsoft thinks its customers will enjoy these options. Another feature is that all Microsoft applications are constructed so that the user of Windows 10 can toggle them on or off in either of the two interfaces.

Most importantly, one of the brand new policies at Microsoft [Apple and Samsung have done this successfully before now] is to allow folks using a Windows 7 or Windows 8 operating system device, to upgrade for free to Windows 10 in the first year after it is released. One of the several benefits of upgrading will be that most if not all new Microsoft applications and capabilities that arise thereafter will not be usable on old operating systems but will be very usable on a Windows 10 operating system. If your hardware is still fully functional, it probably would make sense to take advantage of a free upgrade to Windows 10 even though the upgrade will take several hours to install. Remember that when I say “new applications” I’m referring to those that are synced with Microsoft as the installer. I’m not referring to free applications like Adobe PDF and Java Script. They are constructed by their makers to be available for download and installation on all presently used operating systems and you need not be afraid you would lose those even if you do not upgrade to Windows 10.

Hope this helps to inform and alleviate concerns you may have. See articles on this topic by Reid Goldsborough who is a Windows 7 operating system user see article—_Should_Windows_7_Users_Be_Worried_.html


Texas Tech University Libraries uses the Library of Congress Classification system e.g D524.7.M53 F39. There are other classification systems for identifying publications such as Dewey Decimal e.g. 843/.912 19 and OCLC Online Computer Library Center originally Ohio College Library Center 11625220 and ISBN International Standard Book Number 2-7073-0695-9. OCLC and its member institutions cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat the largest online public access catalog of library material in the world at If one finds a publication there and types in his or her zip code the page will advise if the publication is cataloged in a nearby library, and it will reference commercial publishers of the publication, so this search device is often used initially when doing research as it is efficient and saves time exploring.


Sharon Olds, poet, won the T.S. Eliot Prize and the Pulitzer Prize for her poetry collection Stag’s Leap: Poems (Alfred A. Knopf 2012) that contains intimate verses that chronicle the dissolution of a marriage of 32 years before and after the husband abruptly leaves his wife for another woman. Her books include Satan Says (1980), The Dead and the Living (1984), The Gold Cell (1987), The Matter of This World (1987), The Sign of Saturn (1991), The Father (1992), The Wellspring (1996), Blood, Tin, Straw (1999), The Unswept Room (2002), Strike Sparks (2004), and One Secret Thing (2008). Her poems have also appeared in more than 100 poetry anthologies. $19.58 hardcover $12.39 paperback $ 11.77 e-book at 114 pages Texas Tech Library PS 3565.L34 S73 Born in 1942 she is 72 years of age and former director of the Creative Writing Program at New York University in New York City.

Art on the Llano Estacado Art Sale & Exhibition opens on Friday June 5 with a ticketed $150 per person soiree and concludes on Saturday June 6 with a free public show and sale of the previous day’s unsold art in the Sculpture Court of Texas Tech Museum At the soiree Paul Milosevich will receive the 2015 Legacy Award. Here is the list of artists whose works will be offered for sale


If this Update began recalling war, let it end by recalling non-violence and peaceful change and improvement. On Saturday March 14, 2015 in Parliament Square in Central London England a nine foot bronze statue by sculptor Philip Jackson was unveiled. Mohandas K. Gandhi usually referred to by his sobriquet Mahatma meaning Great Soul [maha=great and atman=soul] depicted by his appearance as he visited London in 1931 for a constitutional conference. Prime Minister Cameron spoke at the unveiling and India’s finance minister participated

Gandhi arrived in London in 1888 at age nineteen to study law and after three years returned to India as a qualified barrister. He practiced law there and in South Africa where he learned the structures of government and their weaknesses including oppression of masses of people. He returned to India not to practice law again in the courts but to lead his people to freedom from oppression and independence from foreign rule, turning the politically unimaginable into the politically inevitable. He did it by force of character and willful public example without firing a shot.

The nine foot statuary stands on a substantial plinth so his place among the luminaries in this venue is monumental. They invite us to think and act large, not small. They invite us to stop our pettiness, particularly when we look at Gandhi and across the Square at Winston Churchill who said in 1931 while attending the same conference “He’s a seditious Middle Temple lawyer”. We need to reduce our snide and thoughtless speech lest some may remember it years later and find that it did not so much describe Gandhi as it discredited Churchill. Middle Temple is one of four Inns of Court that have the exclusive privilege to Call students to admission to the Bar as barristers in Her Majesty’s Courts.

Arts History Update for early April 2015

23 Mar

Arts History Update for early April 2015 by David Cummins

Three contemporary Israeli films are coming to Lubbock. They are each award winners.

Waltz With Bashir (2008) director Ari Folman, 90 minutes will be shown at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema regular price for public, Texas Tech ID persons admitted free, on Sunday March 29 at 7:00 pm. An introduction by Rob Weiner librarian and film devotee will occur before the film is shown, and he will moderate a discussion afterward. Trailer is here

Fill The Void (2012) director Rama Burshtein, 90 minutes will be shown on Tuesday April 7 at 7:00 pm in English Philosophy Departments Building Lecture Hall 001 (basement west wing of building) free to all. An introduction by Kimberly L. Jones, Ph.D. candidate in Fine Arts will occur before the film is shown, and she will moderate a discussion afterward. Trailer is here

Footnote (2011) director Joseph Cedar, 103 minutes will be shown on Tuesday April 14 at 7:00 pm in English Philosophy Departments Building Lecture Hall 001 free to all. An introduction by Dr. Kristi Humphreys, professor of Critical Studies and Artistic Practice will occur before the film is shown, and she will moderate a discussion afterward. Trailer is here


Mickey Edwards, The Parties Versus The People: How To Turn Republicans and Democrats into Americans (Yale University Press 2012) $17.01 hardcover $ 10.46 paperback $9.94 e-book, at 233 pages the former Republican Congressman from Oklahoma cracks the nut of the dysfunctional Congress. Texas Tech Library JK 2265.E38 Lubbock Public Library 320.973 EDWA Adult Nonfiction America’s political system is dysfunctional. While this is a widely held view, it is a problem that—so far—has proved intractable. After every election, voters discover yet again that political “leaders” are simply quarreling in a never-ending battle between the two warring tribes, the Republicans and Democrats. In this critically important book, a distinguished statesman and thinker identifies exactly how our political and governing systems reward intransigence, discourage compromise, and undermine our democracy. He then describes exactly what must be done to banish the negative effects of partisan warfare from our political system.
As a former congressman, Mickey Edwards witnessed firsthand how important legislative battles can devolve into struggles not over principle but over party advantage. He offers graphic examples of how this problem has intensified and reveals how political battles have become nothing more than conflicts between party machines. Edwards’s solutions—specific, practical, fair, and original—show the way to break the stranglehold of the political party system. The Parties Versus the People offers hope for a fundamental renewal of American democracy. On March 15, 2015 he appeared on TV-C-SPAN2 with three journalists discussing his book and ideas. The one hour video is watchable here

See also Mike Lofgren, The Party Is Over: How Republicans Went Crazy, Democrats Became Useless, and the Middle Class Got Shafted (Viking 2012) $19.08 hardcover $11.25 paperback $10.69 e-book, at 240 pages. Lubbock Public Library 3 copies 324.273 LOFG Adult Nonfiction


Gary Paul Nabhan will speak on Friday April 17 at 6:30 pm in the Formby
Room of the Texas Tech University Southwest Collection building “A Naturalist in Southwest Ranch Country”. A reception and book signing will follow. Nabhan is W.K. Kellogg Endowed Chair in Borderlands, Water and Food Security at University of Arizona in Tucson Arizona. Free event.

The previous evening Susan Brind Morrow will speak same time and place “Language and Nature: Hieroglyphs and Metaphor” A reception and book signing will follow. Free event.


Plains Indians before introduction of the horse were river valley seed planter/farmers and hunter/gatherers. Then the Pueblo Indian Revolt of August 1680 occurred in the Santa Fe de New Mexico province of New Spain during which 400 Spaniards were killed and more than 2,000 were driven out of the region mostly to El Paso del Norte. The Indians seized the Spanish horses and they were traded on to Plains Indians who quickly adopted a horse culture that led to those Indians being called Lords of the Plains and harvesting bison for subsistence. Two centuries later in 1890 at Wounded Knee South Dakota, the Lords would be vanquished and defeated, enduring the final indignity of pitiless massacre.

The Plains Indians Artists of Earth and Sky is an exhibit at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City March 9 – May 10, 2015 Many nations including Osage, Quapaw, Omaha, Crow, Cheyenne, Arapaho, Lakota, Blackfeet, Pawnee, Kiowa, Comanche, and Meskwaki are represented.


Walter Benjamin 1892-1940 death by suicide at Portbou Spain where he was denied entrance into Spain when fleeing Vichy France. German philosopher, culture critic and historian he explored elements of German idealism, romanticism, historical materialism, and Jewish mysticism. He wrote, as early as 1930, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction. His last project was On the Concept of History (1940) in which he sought to explode any linear understanding of the past or reconstructing the past “as it actually was at the time”.

A monumental biography at 755 pages is Howard Eiland & Michael W. Jennings, Walter Benjamin: A Critical Life (Harvard University Press 2014) $29.38 hardcover $23.49 e-book Texas Tech Library electronic download.

and see Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings volume 1 1913-1926 (all Harvard University Press translated from German by Eiland and Jennings, 1996) $25.12, volume 2 part 1 1927-1930 (1999) $23.88, volume 2 part 2 1931-1934 (2005) $20.77, volume 3 1935-1938 (2002) $21.78, volume 4 1938-1940 (2006) $25.09. Texas Tech Library PT2603.E455 A26 (1996)

Benjamin was well situated within the intelligentsia of Europe and in particular the Frankfurt School that had a plan for getting him out of France, to which he had expatriated in 1933 from Germany, and to the United States and safety but the plan broke down with catastrophic results. The man was lost but his voluminous writings have informed intellectuals who’ve read them in German, and now mono-linguist English readers have full access.


Charles Jencks, In What Style Shall We Build?, Architectural Review, March 12, 2015 is an article that I’ve read twice already and will read again. It’s fascinating if original formative expanding innovation is your ken or cup of tea. Even if not, notice amazing structures such as The Royal Pavilion at Brighton England in the Hindu style [literally Indo-Saracenic Revival Architectural style] The City of Culture of Galicia in Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain by Peter Eisenman John Lewis Department Store in Leicester England by Foreign Office Architects Casa de Musica in Porto Portugal by Rem Koolhaus The Crystal Building extension at Royal Ontario Museum by Daniel Libeskind Foundation Louis Vuitton by Frank Gehry The Zayed National Museum of Abu Dhabi by Norman Foster and more.

Books to read on the topic include: Farshid Moussavi, The Function of Style (2015), Nikolaus Pevsner, Pioneers of the Modern Movement from William Morris to Walter Gropius (1936), Charles Jencks, The Story of Post-Modernism: Five Decades of the Ironic, Iconic and Critical in Architecture (2011) and Charles Jencks, The Iconic Building: The Power of Enigma (2005).


Panel Discussion by three artists Will Wilson, Jaune Quick To See Smith, and Sherwin Bitsui will occur Thursday April 2 at 4:00 – 5:30 pm in Texas Tech’s English Philosophy Departments Building Lecture Hall 001. Free event and public is invited. Theme is Art After Drought: The Politics of Representation in a Time of Climate Change. A reception will occur afterward in the School of Art Building 5:30 – 7:30 pm. Wilson and Bitsui are Navajo, Smith is Salish/Kootenai. Bitsui is a poet Wilson is a photographer and Smith is a painter and print-maker. Notice her Ode To Chief Seattle (1991). I have been privileged to be on the Flathead Indian Reservation in Montana and own a marvelous ceramic piece of art made by a resident member of the Salish/Kootenai federated tribes. Smith’s initial exposure to art came at Olympic Community College in Bremerton Washington.

Wilson’s photography works are on display at the School of Art Landmark Art Gallery from April 2 through May 3. Smith’s works are at the School of Art Folio Gallery from March 25 – April 12 and she is in the permanent collection of the Texas Tech Museum.


A New York Times article focuses on the Iranian artist and her exhibit at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City March 13 – June 3, 2015 and here is the Guggenheim website The exhibit is Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian: Infinite Possibility. Mirror Works and Drawings 1974-2014. Click on the image Geometry of Hope (1976) the mixed media being reverse painted glass, mirrored glass, plaster and wood. She illustrates the power of abstraction to take an aesthetic beyond a representation of physical reality into a representation of metaphysical reality. Can a soul be contained, even incarcerated, yet dwell with hope for another future? Doesn’t this piece demonstrate that?


Robert Hass is the last event in the academic year’s Presidential Lecture & Performance Series on Friday April 10, 2015 at 7:00 pm in Texas Tech Student Union Building Allen Theater $18. Hass is foremost known as a poet but his prose and translation are equally strong. Hearing him read is a visceral pleasure.

1. Field Guide (1973) poems
2. Praise (1979) poems
3. Twentieth Century Pleasures: Prose on Poetry (1984) essays and reviews
4. Human Wishes (1989) poems in which Hass is a student of desire, telling us that what we want is who we are, and intimating how likely or unlikely we may get what we want
5. The Essential Haiku: Versions of Basho, Buson, and Issa (1994) translation of works by three masters of the short Japanese poem
6. Czeslaw Milosz, translation over decades of seven collections of poetry by the Nobel Prize winner’s work
7. Sun Under Wood (1996) poems, won National Book Critics Circle Award
8. United States Poet Laureate 1995-1997
9. Time and Materials: Poems 1997-2005 (2007) poems, won the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize
10. The Apple Trees at Olema: New and Selected Poems (2010)
11. What Light Can Do: Essays on Art, Imagination, and the Natural World (2012)

Hass has been chancellor of the Academy of American Poets 2001-2007 and his own kind granted him the career pinnacle Wallace Stevens Award in 2014. He is a long-time professor of English at University of California at Berkeley Here is a 49 minute video of Robert Hass reading at a 2013 Sewanee Writers Conference


Aspen Colorado has become an art scene. Amy Phelan’s home with art appearing throughout her three story staircase, is a fabulous space The new Aspen At Museum designed by Shigeru Ban Architects opened in 2014 and admission is free to the public courtesy of Amy and John Phelan


Odis “Pop” Echols 1903-1974 was a vocalist, radio announcer at KSEL Radio in Lubbock, and owner operator of KCLV Radio in Clovis New Mexico who mentored many musicians on the Llano Estacado. His son Odis L. Echols, Jr. known as Odis from Clovis 1930-2013 was a popular New Mexico State Senator and later lobbyist. He was a graduate of Texas Tech University. An exhibit on Pop Echols goes up April 1 through September 30 2015 at Texas Tech University Southwest Collection / Special Collections Libraries with an opening reception on Tuesday April 7 from 5:30 – 6:30 pm. Free admission for both exhibit and reception.

Arts History Update for late March 2015

11 Mar

Arts History Update for late March 2015 by David Cummins
Cochran County Texas towns are Morton, the county seat, Bledsoe southwest of Morton near the New Mexico border on FM 769, and Whiteface southeast of Morton on SH 114. Morton is at the junction of Texas SH 114 [east-west] and SH 214 [north-south]. Texas Last Frontier Museum (2003) in Morton is located in a former Masonic Temple (1957) building. What is the significance of the phrase Last Frontier and how did Morton gain its name?
Christopher C. Slaughter was a cattle baron whose Lazy S Ranch (1898) 246,699 acres at the end of the 19th century, traversed almost all of Cochran County and more land. George Washington Littlefield purchased 238,585 acres from the XIT Ranch in 1901 and a small portion of it was in Cochran County. Slaughter died in 1919 and his heirs dissolved the cattle company in 1921 into small enough tracts that they could be sold either as family ranches or family farms. Minnie Slaughter Veal, his eldest daughter, hired a land agent to sell some of her property and his name was Morton Smith. He founded the town in 1923 and named it for himself. His land agency office was on the east side of the town square. Morton was incorporated in 1933 and elected its first mayor. Cochran County was one of the last areas in Texas to which a person or family could emigrate and “break out” new land. It was regarded as The Last Frontier. The western boundary of the county is the New Mexico border. Morton population is 2,006 as of the 2010 census, about 61% Hispanic, 33% Anglo, 4% African-American. Cochran County population 1890-zero, 1900-25, 1920-67, 1930-1,963, 1960-6,417, 1970-5,326, and 2010-3,127 so it’s been declining since 1960.

Do not confuse Christopher C. Slaughter’s Lazy S Ranch with his younger brother John B. Slaughter’s U Lazy S Ranch headquartered in Post Texas, Garza County, now owned by the John F. Lott family Christopher C. Slaughter had four younger brothers John, Will, Pete and Mace all in the cattle business at one time or another. Christopher C. Slaughter was often known as “Lum” or “C.C.” or “Colonel” and can be distinguished in that way. Christopher C. Slaughter’s Long S Ranch (1877) headquartered in Big Spring Texas eventually extended north to the Plainview Texas area and included a ranch near Lubbock called the Whiteface Ranch. He was known for cattle breeding, introducing short horn cattle to replace the indigenous longhorn and then breeding shorthorns with Hereford cattle to produce the heaviest cattle sent to market from Texas, and the most expensive, making him a fortune.

Christopher C. Slaughter bought his Lazy S Ranch land in 1898 from the dissolving XIT Ranch that included in 1885 nearly the entire Cochran County area, the southern most division of seven divisions of the XIT1 called Las Casas Amarillas or The Yellow Houses [a land feature in northwest Hockley County and southwest Lamb County] and from 1887 it was a breeding range for the XIT. Thus the Cochran County land was Comanche domain or owned by XIT Ranch or later by Christopher C. Slaughter until it was broken up into tracts for sale in 1921 as “Last Frontier” land for purchase and settlement.

One can keep all these cattlemen of yore straight by consulting William Joseph Elliot, The Spurs (Texas Spur 1939) Texas Tech Library Southwest Collection TEX 51.3 S772E, reprinted W. J. “Scotch Bill” Elliot, The Spurs (Texas State House Press 2009) hardcover $22.25. W.J. Elliot, a native of Scotland, arrived April 28, 1888 at the headquarters of the Espuela [Spanish for Spur] Land and Cattle Company (1884) to become the ranch bookkeeper. He helped survey the town of Espuela [Spur] (1891) and was manager of the general store and postmaster into 1910. The collection of the Spur-Dickens County Museum 327 Burlington Avenue, Spur Texas 79370 phone 806-294-5401 tells his story and he tells the story of cattlemen from experiences with them. The short version of the Spur Ranch is that it was never profitable for its English and Scottish investors and was sold in 1906 to an American land syndicate that would gradually reduce the cattle herd terminating it in 1915. The syndicate sold parcels and tracts of land for family ranches and farms, completing that process by 1938 when author Elliot’s book would be published. William Curry Holden, The Espuela Land and Cattle Company: A Study of a Foreign-Owned Ranch in Texas (Texas State Historical Association 1970) ABE Books good condition $14.41, see also J.W. Williams, The Big Ranch Country (Double Mountain Books Series) (Texas Tech University Press 1999) paperback $15.85

John and Bette Hope of Levelland, Jim Hogue, and Dorothy Barker on behalf of the Hockley and Cochran Counties Historical Commissions organized and conducted several bus tours in September called Last Frontier Ranch Heritage Tour, the sixth annual held on September 25, 2010 I was privileged to attend and enjoyed a meal at the C.C. Slaughter Lazy S Ranch headquarters building three miles southwest of Morton. The 2011 tour extended to Zavala Camp [cowboy camp in Hockley County for partners Fountain Goodlet Oxsheer and C.C. Slaughter], L7 Ranch in Terry County, T Bar Ranch in Lynn County, Double Lakes, Tahoka Lake, Meadow and Ropesvile communities. F. G. Oxsheer by 1884 operated a large ranch in Hockley County and was a partner rather than a competitor with Slaughter.

The Buffalo Soldier Expedition of 1877 occurred because, although the Comanche were forced onto the Indian Territory [current Oklahoma] reservation in 1875, there were still an occasional Comanche hunting/raiding party [depends on one’s perspective] that would leave the reservation and venture out onto the Llano Estacado. Company A of 10th U.S. Army Cavalry under the command of Captain Nicholas Nolan was searching for such a hunting/raiding party when the troops became lost and disoriented, had used up their water supplies, and were without access to water for 86 hours. Four troopers and one Anglo buffalo hunter died. There are four gravestones in the Morton Memorial Cemetery [north of town on SH 114] for those African-American soldiers John H. Bonds, John T. Gordon, John Isaacs and Isaac Derwin. Deeper into the Cemetery to the west is a stone marker for the Comanche who inhabited this area before Anglo settlement. Paul H. Carlson, The Buffalo Soldier Tragedy of 1877 (Texas A&M University Press 2003) Texas Tech Library E99.C85 C36, ABE Books new $14.79 incl s&h, Lubbock Public Library 976.4 CARL Adult Nonfiction

South of the Museum is the Quanah Parker Trail Arrow (installed March 15, 2013) crafted by metal sculptor Charles A. Smith of 290 FM 1730 Wilson TX 79381-23042 in his studio in far north Lynn County near the Lubbock County line. Next to the Arrow is Minnie Veal School (1922) named for the eldest daughter of the legendary cattle rancher in the county.

In the south part of town is Strickland Park with a man-made pond, the site of an annual Fireworks Display on July 4 conducted by the Volunteer Fire Department. Don’t look for the weekly newspaper The Morton Tribune as it folded about 2011 and the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal newspaper is distributed daily in Morton and throughout the county. Levelland & Hockley County News-Press weekly newspaper also serves the Morton area. The Morton High School “Indians” play sports with black/gold colors accented by white uniforms.

Leave Morton going south on SH 214 just two miles and west on SH 1169 for a half mile to the historic C.C. Slaughter Lazy S Ranch headquarters building that is rent-able as an event center The metal Historical Marker says Upwards of 246,669 acres of Cochran and Hockley county lands. Col. C. C. Slaughter – a leader in banking, ranching and religious life in Texas – purchased land 1898-1901. First headquarters was a half-dugout. In 1915, C. C. Slaughter Cattle Company, Inc. brought men from Mexico to build this adobe and concrete quadrangle, on order of a Spanish hacienda. This was one of finest Texas ranch buildings of its era. Seventeen miles south of Morton on SH 214 and then 2.5 miles west on FM 1585 is Old Surratt Territory Ranch where the marker says Once representative of the late-19th century settlement and ranching history of the vast grasslands of the Texas Panhandle. Marshall Surratt (1849-1927), an East Texas native who settled in Waco and became a prominent attorney and district judge, purchased the 53 sections of land in 1885. Although the territory was known by his name, Jude Surratt never lived in Cochran County; he leased the acreage to the Jumbo Cattle Company. Operated by brothers Nick and John Beal and John Beal’s brother-in-law, F. G. Oxsheer, the Jumbo was one of a number of large ranching operations, including those owned by such famous cattlemen as C. C. Slaughter and George Littlefield, that thrived despite several years of winter blizzards and summer droughts. Wells and windmills were located throughout the Surratt Territory to provide reliable water sources for the herds of cattle roaming its plains. The early history of Cochran County settlement is the history of its ranching. The census of 1890 revealed no permanent residents; in 1900 ranchers working in the county accounted for its population of 25, and by 1920 the figure had risen to 67. As free range ranching gave way to fenced pastures of large syndicates and smaller family farms and ranches, the once vast ranch lands were divided. These smaller operations resulted in a division of lands and a surge in population, as reflected by the 1930 census figure of 1,963. Purchased by a succession of absentee landowners after 1900, the Surratt Territory remained intact until 1953.

If you want to visit Bledsoe travel south of Morton eight miles on SH 214 and west on FM 769 for 13 miles to the town of Bledsoe, a South Plains & Santa Fe Railway Company town and cattle shipping center one mile from the New Mexico border. The line opened in 1925. Travel east on FM 769 and SH 125 to Whiteface, formerly a cattle shipping center but now an oil and gas well operations hub, that includes the Whiteface Historical Museum located in the former Whiteface Hotel (1926). The South Plains & Santa Fe Railway Co completed a line west of Lubbock to Whiteface, Lehman and Bledsoe in Cochran County in 1925. The line from Whiteface to Bledsoe was abandoned in 1983 and the depot at Bledsoe was moved to Lubbock as an artifact. The history of Whiteface is here including the first producing oil well in the county 1936 on the Duggan Ranch south of Whiteface. Cal Farley’s Girlstown USA was established on the Duggan Ranch property in 1949 eight miles south of Whiteface and currently houses 84 girls. I’ve toured the impressive facility at 2490 SH 1780 Whiteface Texas.

Festivities occur each Summer in Morton and sometimes a re-enactment of the Buffalo Soldier event, this year on June 26-28, 2015 Texas Last Frontier Celebration and Buffalo Soldier Encampment. Here is the poster for the 2014 Celebration

The Mallet Ranch (1885) of Mallet Land and Cattle Company in southwest Hockley County near Sundown Texas was located adjacent to the C.C. Slaughter Lazy S Ranch and the ranches were competitors. David DeVitt operated the Mallet Ranch and his two daughters Christine DeVitt and Helen DeVitt Jones moved to Lubbock late in life. Oil was discovered on the Mallet Ranch in 1937 and oil revenue continues to fund the CH [Christine and Helen] Foundation and the Helen Jones Foundation (1984) that are major philanthropic entities on the South Plains. David J. Murrah, Oil, Taxes, and Cats: A History of the DeVitt Family and the Mallet Ranch (Texas Tech University Press 1994). Llano Estacado Heritage Foundation is located at 204 E. Carter Street, Sundown Texas 79372 phone 806-638-4524

Mallet Event Center & Arena (2012) is located on the south side of the city of Levelland Texas and is a marvelous addition to the area. It has a banquet hall, an exposition hall, an arena [dirt], a warm-up arena [also dirt], and covered penning for animals. Small events can be held in the lobby concourse area. Texas Limousin cattle breeders will appear in a show at the Mallet on May 22-24, 2015, a most fitting experience as a legacy from the breeding activities of Christopher C. Slaughter more than a century earlier in this area.

Comanche tribes in the Texas Oklahoma area were, from the Edwards Plateau region going north: Peneteka (honey eaters), Nokoni (those who turn back), Tanina (liver eaters), Tenewa (those who stay downstream), Kotsotekas (buffalo eaters) in Oklahoma, Yamparikas (yap plant eaters) in Arkansas River area in Kansas, and to the northwest Quahadis (antelopes) on the Llano Estacado. Notice that the Whiteface High School mascot is Antelopes, as is Abernathy High School and Post High School. Antelope Texas is on the road between Archer City and Jacksboro twenty miles northwest of Jacksboro in Jack County It is culturally notable that the Comanche of this area called themselves Antelope people and Anglo settlements are named for the antelope and their sports teams mascot is named for the antelope. People who are thought to be so different and distinctive may have at a deep unconscious level similar leanings and appreciations.


Great Western Cattle Trail Association annual national meeting is Friday-Sunday July 17-19, 2015 at Altus Oklahoma. Due to the recent passing of Mary Ann McCuistian it is being named Mary Ann McCuistian Memorial Conference. A Saturday afternoon excursion will take attendees to Doan’s Crossing of the Red River on the Great Western Cattle Trail 1874-1893 headed from Texas for Dodge City Kansas. and cities like Seymour are proud of their location on the trail This map depicts the Trail beginning at San Antonio, Kerrville, Abilene, Fort Griffin, Vernon, Doan’s Crossing, Altus Oklahoma, Elk City, Fort Supply, Doby Springs, Ashland Kansas, Big Basin and Dodge City railhead A price of $8 per head at San Antonio compared to $23 per head at Dodge City is what caused the cattle drive to the railhead.

Robin Cole-Jett, Traveling History Up the Cattle Trails: A Road Tripper’s Guide to the Cattle Drives of the Southwest (Red River Historian Press 2014) paperback $15.29 at or $15.52 incl s&h at ABE Books new American culture has grown up around the mythic West – the cowboy, the open range, and the longhorn. What better way to discover the legends surrounding the Old West than to follow the history of the cattle drives? “Traveling History Up the Cattle Trails” offers three historic
road trips that trace the Shawnee, Chisholm, and Great Western Cattle Trails from Texas all the way to Kansas. Complete travel itineraries, vintage photographs, depictions of relics from the past, and trail drive histories make this book a great traveling companion for all readers enthralled with the open road.

The Texas chapter of the Trail is here


Lubbock Concert Band is a community all-volunteer band that plays concerts at All Saints Episcopal School auditorium at 3222 103rd Street east of Indiana Avenue at 103rd Street. Next concert is Friday March 27 at 7:30 pm, next after that is Friday May 8 at 7:30 pm. Concerts are free for the public but donations are requested. Keep up with its schedule on Facebook


Save the date. Thursday April 9, 2015 at 7:00 – 8:30 pm Lubbock Lights: Celebrating Musical Heritage on the South Plains: Honorees Wade Bowen, Butch Hancock, Terri Hendrix and Lloyd Maines will be feted at Student Union Building Allen Theater on Texas Tech campus tickets $18 at Select a Seat. Sponsor is Office of the President at Texas Tech M. Duane Nellis


Texas Tech Women’s Basketball ended the conference season on March 2, 2015 in the cellar of the Big XII Conference with a 5-13 record 15-15 overall, and # 10 seed Texas Tech met # 7 seed West Virginia in the first round of the Big XII Championship post-season tourney on Friday March 6 at 8:30 pm in American Airlines Center at Dallas Texas TV-Fox College Sports Central channel 1648 HD. Tech lost that game 59-40 and the entire season ends 5-13 conference 15-16 overall, a losing record. Number one seed Baylor went on to win the Conference Championship tourney.

Texas Tech Men’s Basketball ended the conference season on March 6, 2015 in the cellar of the Big XII Conference with a 3-15 conference record 13-18 overall season. The conference ended Saturday March 7 and Big XII Championship post-season tourney at Sprint Center in Kansas City Missouri begins Wednesday March 11 where # 10 seed Texas Tech meets # 7 seed Texas at 8:00 pm TV-ESPNU channel 1605 High Definition. Tech lost that game and the entire season ends 3-15 conference 13-19 overall season, a losing record.

We re-learned an earlier lesson, round ball is more fun if your team wins, more than occasionally even more than sporadically, and is competitive in each game with as much chance to win as the opponent.

Over in the bluegrass state it’s quite a different story, a rare event, as University of Kentucky at Lexington Men’s Basketball finished its season 31-0 and heads into the SEC [Southeastern Conference] Championship tourney and then the NCAA Championships as the number one seed and the team to beat, if anyone can.


The Semi-Arid Landscape exhibition at the Buddy Holly Center Fine Arts Gallery opened March 6 and continues through April 19, 2015. More than sixty artists contributed to it, and all media are represented.

On Saturday March 14 from 1:00 – 3:00 pm Lubbock County Horticulture Agent Vikram Baliga will offer plans for residence owners to begin xeri-scaping their yards on a reasonable budget. Free event at Buddy Holly Center. During those same hours children under age 12 may create a terrarium or other piece of art. $7 registration by March 10.

Tim Oliver’s Rain in Caprock Country watercolor is in the exhibit and

Buddy Holly Center 1801 Crickets Avenue [former Avenue G] is open Tuesday-Saturday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm and Sunday 1:00 – 5:00 pm admission $2-$5 phone 806-775-3560


Fleur Jaeggy, S.S. Proleterka (a Yugoslavian Ship) (transl. from Italian by Alastair McEwen, New Directions Publishing 2003) a novella in 122 pages, is an account of a girl’s sensual awakening and search for her “lost” father who has been allowed by the girl’s mother to sail with the girl to Greece. Texas Tech Library PQ 4870.A4 P7613. ABE Books as new $4.44 incl s&h. Jaeggy is an Italian writer with a German name who grew up in Switzerland. She is an edgy author and this work will rattle one’s sensibilities but it’s artfully written.

Christine McKenna, The Disenchanted Widow (Amazon Publishing Co 2013) $11 paperback $ 2 e-book. A novel about life in Ulster during the 1981 Troubles. The author lives in Rostrevor, County Down, Northern Ireland. It’s 1981 and Belfast is burning. So, too, is freshly widowed Bessie Halstone: she burns with a desire to break with her troubled past. With her feckless husband gone, she leaves home hurriedly with her naughty nine-year-old son, Herkie, and not much else. The Dentist, an IRA enforcer, is on her tail. He’s convinced that Bessie, with her “yella hair all puffed up like Merlin Monroe’s,” has absconded with the takings from a bank heist. But car trouble strands mother and son in Tailorstown, a sleepy Ulster village. Bessie finds temporary work as housekeeper for the handsome and mysterious parish priest. In the meantime, Lorcan Strong, an artist and a native of the village, is summoned home. He’s been shanghaied into forging paintings for the IRA. It’s work he cannot refuse; his mother and their business are under threat. Yet things are not what they seem in quirky Tailorstown. There is a “sleeper” in the village. But who? Bizarrely, it is young Herkie, due to his childish curiosity, who unravels the mystery and saves the day. ABE Books good condition $5. A footnote here is that this author submitted a manuscript to and was accepted, and that is a signal of quality to consumers because Amazon is building its brand as a publisher, much to the consternation of historic publishing houses who keep telling us “you would miss us if we were gone” but we keep telling them, with our feet shopping elsewhere “we’re not missing you now so we don’t expect to miss you later, whether present or gone”. What I’ve learned from such publishing houses and The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal saying “you would miss us if we were gone” is that such a statement really means that they refuse to change their business model despite lowered patronage and success by competitors. In contemporary parlance “they just don’t get it”. They won’t adapt, improve and compete even though they preach those qualities for others to adopt.


American Institute of Architects New York Chapter at its Center for Architecture 536 La Guardia Place, New York City on Monday March 16 at 6:00 – 8:00 pm will present author Kelly Easterling speaking about her book Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space (Verso 2014) free for architects $10 for the public Infrastructure is not only the underground pipes and cables controlling our cities. It also determines the hidden rules that structure the spaces all around us – free trade zones, smart cities, suburbs, and shopping malls. Extrastatecraft charts the emergent new powers controlling this space and shows how they extend beyond the reach of government.
Keller Easterling explores areas of infrastructure with the greatest impact on our world – examining everything from standards for the thinness of credit cards to the urbanism of mobile telephony, the world’s largest shared platform, to the “free zone,” the most virulent new world city paradigm. She proposes some unexpected techniques for resisting power in the modern world.
Extrastatecraft will change the way we think about urban spaces – and how we live in them. $22.19 hardcover $15 e-book at 252 pages. Easterling is a professor of architecture at Yale University.
She previously addressed this topic in her book Organization Space: Landscapes, Highways, and Houses in America (MIT Press 2001) and she if no other Northeasterner knows why we understand and value the Llano Estacado as not just a special but unique space, partially organized and partially a natural legacy into which we humans have inserted ourselves as residents and caregivers.


H.O. Robertson: A Self-Taught Texas Regionalist exhibit continues to March 31 at the Meadows Museum on the Southern Methodist University campus in Dallas. A recent gift by the family to the museum and to the Bywaters Special Collections at the Hamon Arts Library generated this exhibit. Horace Oakley Robertson 1887-1970 was widely admired for his paintings during the 1930s and 1940s even though not a member of the Dallas Nine artists group.


Viva Aztlan Festival is Saturday March 21 from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm at Lubbock Memorial Civic Center admission $20 at door or $15 advance purchase. Folklorico dance competition, mariachi music groups, food vendors, and more make this a colorful and vivacious festival

The Seven Celtic Nations are Ireland, Galicia in northwest Spain, Cornwall England, Isle of Man England, Brittany France, Scotland and Wales. Carlos Nunez & Band played at the Legacy Event Center Margaret Talkington Great Hall on Tuesday March 10, 2015 in an absolutely thrilling performance of Galician music and its influences in the other Celtic Nations and around the world, led by the virtuosic power of Nunez who plays two sets of bagpipes, flutes and whistlesúñez-mn0000796364/biography


Arts History Update for mid March 2015

27 Feb

Arts History Update for mid March 2015 by David Cummins

Texas Declaration of Independence was issued by a convention at Washington on the Brazos on March 2, 1836 and the date is celebrated annually as Texas Independence Day. The trail toward independence from northern New Spain and since 1821 from Coahuila y Tejas state in the Mexican Empire and later Mexican Republic is told at and ended on April 21, 1836 at San Jacinto Monument in La Porte Texas east of Houston where Santa Ana’s Army was defeated.

The state was the poorest and most lightly settled in the Mexican federation and its capital was moved from San Antonio de Bexar to Monclova to Saltillo. The new Mexican government had no funds to raise and support an Army for protection of the settlers against Apache, Kiowa and Comanche attacks, so a liberal immigration policy under the 1824 General Colonization Law was enacted and settlers were encouraged to defend themselves. Stephen F. Austin’s Old Three Hundred settled in 1822 under a New Spain land grant to the emprasario prior to Mexican Independence.


Carolyn Summers Bledsoe Goebel 1931-2015 died February 19, 2015 in Lubbock. Her grandfather William H. Bledsoe was a pioneer Lubbock lawyer (from 1908) and state representative (1915-1919) and state senator (1919-1927) whose portrait hangs in Chancellor Robert Duncan’s Lubbock home. Senator Bledsoe wrote the bill in the Texas Legislature that passed in 1923 establishing Texas Technological College.

Inventory of William H. Bledsoe papers at Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library at Texas Tech University

To identify materials in the Collection, go to Texas Archival Resources Online or TARO at and at the website select a repository, in this case select Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, Texas Tech University. You can then browse through the collection files or go directly alphabetically to Bledsoe, William H or Bledsoe, William Harrison, 1869-1936 and open the index to files on this person. The second file has photographs and you cannot view those online so go to the Southwest Collection Library building on the Lubbock campus and provide the name of the file to the attendant and he/she will bring the file containing the photographs to you for your perusal. You cannot take it outside the building but you can make copies if you like and take away copies.


Santa Fe Opera Spring Tour will be in Lubbock in conjunction with the annual Lubbock Arts Festival April 17-19, 2015. Apprentice program singers Abigail Mitchell, soprano from Washington state, and Shea Owens, baritone from Arizona, will sing and Kirt Pavitt, pianist, will play. A special concert for school children will occur on Friday April 17 while the concert for the public is Saturday April 18 at 7:00 pm in the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center Theatre, a free event Funding is in part supplied by the CH Foundation and by Lubbock Friends of the Spring Tour.

Click on this link and then click on the speaker symbol to hear Abigail Mitchell sing and here are videos of Shea Owens singing

Here’s a photo of Kirt Pavitt on December 24, 2014


For the City: The Dallas Festival of Ideas is presented by the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture, and the Dallas Morning News newspaper. Here is the schedule on February 27 and 28, 2015.

A corollary of this event is Imagine Lubbock Together but it seems to have lost momentum and may be stalled.


Aneurin “Nye” Bevan 1897-1960 was a Welsh Labour Party politician who was Minister of Health in the post-World War II Clement Attlee-led government from 1945-1951. His portfolio was to establish the National Health Service granting universal free health care to Brits at point of use.

Nicklaus Thomas-Symonds, Nye: The Political Life of Aneurin Bevan (I.B. Tauris 2014) $50.78 hardcover $17.60 e-book ABE Books new $29.92. Aneurin – Nye – Bevan was one of the pivotal Labour Party figures of the post-war era in Britain. As Minister for Health in Attlee’s government, his role in the foundation of the National Health Service, the world’s largest publicly-funded health service, changed the face of British society forever. The son of a coal miner from South Wales, Bevan was a life-long champion of social justice and the rights of working people, as such becoming one of the leading proponents of Socialist thought in Britain. In this book, acclaimed author Nicklaus Thomas-Symonds provides the first full biography of Bevan.

The Manifest Destiny Billboard Project is a series of artist-produced billboards being put up across the United States tracing the history of western territorial expansion in the 19th century. The first set of ten billboards is by Los Angeles artist Daniel R. Small They are astride Interstate Highway 10 west of El Paso in New Mexico. introduces the project.

There have been other billboard art projects that are more whimsical and essentially fill up space that hasn’t yet been sold to advertisers.


Independent publishing houses in Austin Texas include Typewriter Rodeo A Strange Object The Austin Review AWST Press Litragger NANO Fiction Write Bloody Publishing American Short Fiction
smoking glue gun fields magazine Asatte Press Black Buzzard Press Blooming Tree Press Dos Gatos Press Greenleaf Book Group LLC Plain View Press Virgogray Press Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review Foxing Quarterly Unstuck and
Raspa Magazine

DFW Houston and San Antonio publishers include Arte Publico Press Pecan Grove Press Wings Press Amarillo Bay Camera Obscura Journal Carve Magazine Dappled Things The First Line Huizache: The Magazine of Latino Literature Illya’s Honey Overtime Red River Review Story/Houston TORCH Journal Voices de la Luna Slough Press Queen’s Ferry Press Weasel Press Silver Boomer Books 1966 Lone Star Legacy: Poetry Prose and History in Texas The Literati Quarterly MOLT Literary Journal Nat.Brut Crack the Spine Workers Write! Sakura Review and haijinx

escarp Travis A. Everett, Editor, 3203 45th Street, Lubbock TX 79413

Authors seeking an outlet for their work might consider these houses. University-related journals, listed below, rarely publish submissions from outside academia.

Analecta UT-Austin

American Letters & Commentary UT-San Antonio

The American Literary Review University of North Texas

Aries: Journal of Art & Literature Texas Wesleyan University

Bat City Review, an annual graduate student operated literary magazine sponsored by the English department at UT-Austin

Concho River Review Angelo State University

descant Texas Christian University

Expositor Trinity University

Iron Horse Literary Review Texas Tech University

Front Porch Journal Texas State University

Glass Mountain Magazine University of Houston

Gulf Coast Magazine University of Houston

Hothouse Literary Journal UT-Austin

Langdon Review Tarleton State University

Persona Texas State University

Quicksilver UT-El Paso

REAL: Regarding Arts & Letters Stephen F. Austin State University

Reunion: The Dallas Review UT-Dallas

Rio Grande Review UT-El Paso

RiverSedge UT-Pan American

R2: The Rice Review Rice University

Sagebrush Review UT-San Antonio

Southwest Review Southern Methodist University

Texas Review Press Sam Houston State University

The Thing Itself Our Lady of the Lake University

Trinity Review Trinity University

Writing Texas Lamar University

13th Annual Texas Art Fair and Symposium on Early Texas Art is April 24-26, 2015 in Houston Texas. The event hotel is Hilton University of Houston directly across the street from the University of Houston Student Center where the Fair and Symposium will be held in Ballroom 210 East and UC Theater 203. Reservations at the hotel by phone 1-832-531-6300. The sponsor is CASETA Center for the Advancement and Study of Early Texas Art

Prior to the Fair and Symposium there are two CASETA events: Thursday March 5 at 5:30 pm at San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts Margaret Blagg will provide an illustrated lecture “The Work of Texas Artist Cynthia Brants”. Ms Blagg is the former Director of Old Jail Museum at Albany Texas north of Abilene.

On Friday April 3 a bus tour will depart Wichita Falls Museum of Art on the campus of Midwestern State University at 1:30 pm for Electra Texas [27 miles distant on US Highway 287] to view Allie Victoria Tennant’s New Deal Era mural in the Electra post office. Professor of History Light Cummins will provide a lecture on the mural and the bus will return to Wichita Falls Museum of Art around 4:00 pm.

Both these events are free but attendees should register in advance.

The town of Electra was named for the daughter of W.T. Waggoner and granddaughter of Daniel Waggoner, founder of the historic Waggoner Ranch

Alice Kaplan, Camus Redux: Today Albert Camus is Still Alive But Changed, Thanks to the Art of David Oelhoffen and Kamel Daoud, The Nation Magazine, February 23, 2015

movie – Loin des hommes [Far From Men] (Pathe Films 2014 director David Oelhoffen) is a remaking of the story The Guest by Camus and the movie will be released in the United States on May 1, 2015

novel – Kamel Daoud, Meursault, contra-enquete [Meursault, counter-investigation] (Actes Sud 2014 paperback at 153 pages) ABE Books new $ 26.71. Meursault is the narrator and remorseless French Algerian murderer of an Arab Algerian in Camus’s novel The Stranger and Daoud, a contemporary Algerian writer, uses the character to a different and surprising effect.

Albert Camus 1913-1960 wrote a short story The Guest (1954) when the eight year Algerian Revolution [1954-1962] was just starting and Camus, born in Algeria, was in exile in France. The story appeared later in the collection Exile and the Kingdom (1957, Quality Paperback Book Club 1995, The Guest appears at pages 85-109) (translation by Justin O’Brien can be read on Internet Study Guide discussion of L’Hote [The Guest] Exile and the Kingdom includes The Adulterous Woman, The Renegade, The Silent Men, The Guest, The Artist at Work, and The Growing Stone.

Camus wrote a story Misery in Kabylia (1939) and for which because of his sympathy for Algerian Arabs and Berbers Camus lost his job as a journalist with a French Algerian newspaper. Algerian Chronicles (Harvard University Press 2013) includes Misery in Kabylia.

His unfinished autobiographical novel The First Man was published in 1994. Here is a summary and study guide

Albert Camus, La Chute [The Fall] (novel in 1956) (transl. Justin O’Brien, 144 pages) can be read here

Albert Camus, La Peste [The Plague] (novel in 1947) (transl. Stuart Gilbert) can be read here

Albert Camus, L’Etranger [The Stranger] (1942 novel) (transl. Stuart Gilbert 1946, three other later translations so you have choices)

Albert Camus, The Rebel: An Essay on Man in Revolt (1951) (transl. Anthony Bower, Alfred A. Knopf 1956) can be read here

Absurdist existentialism is reflected in his essays Betwixt and Between (1937) Nuptials (1938) The Myth of Sisyphus (1942 a literary essay) Letters to A German Friend (1945) included in a collection of essays Resistance, Rebellion and Death (1960, transl. Justin O’Brien, Alfred A. Knopf 1961),_Rebellion,_and_Death Texas Tech Library PQ 2605.A3734 A25 ABE Books good condition $3.49. Internet philosophy article on Camus

Camus won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957 and, due to his untimely death at age 46 in a car accident, passed quickly into legend. So much has been said, so many interpretations made, so many speculations assumptions and projections, so much labeling, that taken as a whole it only proves his own absurdist existentialism. We live our history but don’t make it.

Siglo de Oro [golden age] Drama Festival is March 18-22 at Chamizal National Memorial in El Paso

Outlaws and Legends Music Fest is March 27-28 at Back Porch of Texas located at Interstate Highway 20 and US Highway 277 in Abilene, a fundraiser for the Ben Richey Boys Ranch admission for all weekend is $49 in advance $65 at the gate

Buffalo Gap Wine & Food Summit is April 24-26 at Perini Ranch in Buffalo Gap south of Abilene tickets by phone 1-800-367-1721 haute cuisine on ranch grounds

Arts History Update for early March 2015

22 Feb

Arts History Update for early March 2015 by David Cummins

At the weekly Arts History Lecture Series on Fridays in the Texas Tech Museum Jones Auditorium, the lecturer Christian Conrad advised that he is putting his lecture on Renoir on the You Tube platform in several parts, each about 13 minutes in length. Go to and in the search box type christian conrad renoir and you will find six segments of his two lectures on Renoir. Type in christian conrad whistler, and you will find four segments of his lecture on James Abbot McNeill Whistler.

Donald Antrim, Elect Mr. Robinson for a Better World (Viking 1993) Announcing a bold new American voice laced with pitch black humor and as taut as a victim on a rack, this spectacularly provocative debut novel is graceful, electric, a wickedly funny tale of a world made riotous by life’s mysterious and sometimes violent accidents. (Picador paperback $12.02 e-book $10 189 pages ABE Books good $7.49)
The Hundred Brothers: A Novel (Crown Publishing 1997)

A family reunion of 99 brothers–the oldest 90, the youngest 20. The event gives rise to the usual conflicting memories, hurt feelings, rivalries and alliances, but with so many emotions at work, little wonder the reunion explodes. Part comedy, part serious study of family relations. By the author of Elect Mr. Robinson for a Better World. (Picador 2012 paperback $12.18 e-book $10 ABE Books good $3.98 at 208 pages)

The Verificationist: A Novel (Alfred A. Knopf 2000)

A gathering of psychoanalysts and a narrator with a dissociated personality whose vantage point is the ceiling of a pancake house–these are the basic elements of this deadly serious, desperately playful, off-the-wall and perfectly on-target new novel. (Picador 2011 paperback $10.14 e-book $10 ABE Books $3.99 at 189 pages)

The Emerald Light in the Air: Stories (Farrar, Straus & Giroux 2014)

“A masterful story collection–heartbreaking and hilarious–from one of America’s greatest writers Nothing is simple for the men and women in Donald Antrim’s stories. As they do the things we all do–bum a cigarette at a party, stroll with a girlfriend down Madison Avenue, take a kid to the zoo–they’re confronted with their own uncooperative selves. These artists, writers, lawyers, teachers, and actors make fools of themselves, spiral out of control, have delusions of grandeur, despair, and find it hard to imagine a future. They talk, they listen, they hope, they dream. They look for communion in a city, both beautiful and menacing, which can promise so much and yield so little. But they are hungry for life. They want to love and be loved. These stories, all published in The New Yorker over the last fifteen years, make it clear that Antrim is one of America’s most important writers. His work has been praised by his significant contemporaries, including Jonathan Franzen, Thomas Pynchon, Jeffrey Eugenides, and George Saunders, who described The Verificationist as “one of the most pleasure-giving, funny, perverse, complicated, addictive novels of the last twenty years.” And here, at last, is the story collection we have been waiting for, The Emerald Light in the Air, Antrim’s best book yet” (2014 hardcover $16.74) (Picado 2015 paperback $11.60) e-book $10 ABE Books new $17.14

Here is a You Tube video 43 minutes in length of Antrim reading the last story in The Emerald Light in the Air which is the title story

An actor prepares —
Pond, with mud —
Solace —
Another Manhattan —
He knew —
Ever since —
The emerald light in the air.

Donald Antrim, The Afterlife: A Memoir (Farrar Straus & Giroux 2006) family biography

“In the winter of 2000, shortly after his mother’s death from cancer and malnourishment, Donald Antrim, author of Elect Mr. Robinson for a Better World, The Hundred Brothers, and The Verificationist, began writing about his family. In pieces that appeared in The New Yorker and were anthologized in Best American Essays, Antrim explored his intense and complicated relationships with his mother, Louanne, an artist and teacher who was, at her worst, a ferociously destabilized and destabilizing alcoholic; his gentle grandfather, who lived in the mountains of North Carolina and who always hoped to save his daughter from herself; and his father, who married Louanne twice. The Afterlife is not a temporally linear coming-of-age memoir; instead, Antrim follows a logic of unconscious life, of dreams and memories, of fantasies and psychoses, the way in which the world of the alcoholic becomes a sleepless, atemporal world. In it, he comes to terms with–and fails to comes to terms with–the nature of addiction and the broken states of loneliness, shame, and loss that remain beyond his power to fully repair. This is a tender and even blackly hilarious portrait of a family–faulty, cracked, enraging. It is also the story of the way the author works, in part through writing this book, to become a man more fully alive to himself and to others, a man capable of a life in which he may never learn, or ever hope to know, the nature of his origins” (Picador 2007 paperback $13.21) e-book $8
Texas Tech Library PS 3551.N85 Z46 hardcover 196 pages ABE Books good condition $3.45
Flatlands Dance Theatre presents its Spring Concert Friday and Saturday April 10-11, 2015 at LHUCA Firehouse Theatre titled Wanderlust: Think Globally, Dance Locally at 8:00 pm $17 general admission, seniors $12
Friday, April 10 and Saturday, April 11, 2015 at 8:00 pm in the Firehouse Theatre – Wanderlust: Think Globally, Dance Locally ; Our spring concert is comprised of two interdisciplinary works, each exploring travel, adventure, transformation, and the idea of “home.” The first act, called Acts of Absence features performances by esteemed guest artist Sarah Gamblin and the choreography of the Big Rig Dance Collective. The second act, called Nivedita tells the epic tale of Sister Nivedita through music composed and performed by Curtis Peoples and choreography by Ali Duffy, Sarah Mondle, Kyla Olson, and Rachel Ure. You don’t want to miss this exciting evening of live dance and music, digital media, and guest artists from all over the state of Texas. Here is information about Sarah Gamblin and Big Rig Dance Collective
Coffee in the Afternoon
by Alberto Rios Arizona Poet Laureate
It was afternoon tea, with tea foods spread out
Like in the books, except that it was coffee.
She made a tin pot of cowboy coffee, from memory,
That’s what we used to call it, she said, cowboy coffee.
The grounds she pinched up in her hands, not a spoon,
And the fire on the stove she made from a match.
I sat with her and talked, but the talk was like the tea food,
A little of this and something from the other plate as well,
Always with a napkin and a thank-you. We sat and visited
And I watched her smoke cigarettes
Until the afternoon light was funny in the room,
And then we said our good-byes. The visit was liniment,
The way the tea was coffee, a confusion plain and nice,
A balm for the nerves of two people living in the world,
A balm in the tenor of its language, which spoke through
our hands
In the small lifting of our cups and our cakes to our lips.
It was simplicity, and held only what it needed.
It was a gentle visit, and I did not see her again.

Madame Cézanne
Through March 15 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

“Superb… It is an exhibition not to be missed.”—Wall Street Journal

There are only a few weeks left to view this exhibition of works by Paul Cézanne (French, 1839–1906) that traces his lifelong attachment to Hortense Fiquet (French, 1850–1922), his wife, the mother of his only son, and his most painted model.

Hamline University School of Law, St Paul MN and William Mitchell College of Law, St Paul MN will merge They are only three miles from each other, and will continue at Mitchell’s facility. Both had suffered 40% drops in recent enrollment. University of St Thomas School of Law is also in St Paul The big boy next door is University of Minnesota School of Law in Minneapolis

Paul Stevenson Oles, FAIA Architect Steve Oles is a graduate of Texas Tech University and a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. He spoke at his alma mater on January 28 and an exhibit Prefiguring the Real: Perspectival Visions of Paul Stevenson Oles is in the College of Architecture ninth floor library viewable by the public.

Book Fairs and Festivals in 2015

Savannah Book Festival February 12-15

Tucson Festival of Books March 14-15

Virginia Festival of the Book March 18-22

AWP [Association of Writers and Writing Programs] Conference and Book Fair April 8-11

Los Angeles Times Festival of Books April 18-19

Border Book Festival in Las Cruces April 24-27

BookExpo America and BookCon May 27-31 in the Javits Center in New York City

Chicago Tribune Printer’s Row Literary Festival June 6-7

Bay Area Book Festival in Berkeley June 6-7

Northwest Book Festival in Portland July 25

West Texas Book & Music Festival in Abilene September

Library of Congress National Book Festival September

Texas Book Festival October 17-18

Boston Book Festival October 24

Howard Zinn Book Fair in San Francisco November 14

Miami Book Fair International November 15-22

Lone Star Literary Life will keep us up to date on book fairs, festivals and similar events in and around Texas.

Caprock Writers’ Alliance is a new organization of aspiring and established writers who seek a network and outlet for their literary efforts. To join or learn more e-mail The next meeting is Tuesday February 24 at 7:00 pm at Mahon Library downtown Lubbock where author Sarah Negovetich will speak about her young adult dystopian fiction. Authors who might attend such meetings include Carol Morgan, Bear Mills, Richard Jespers, Barbara Brannon, Kay Ellington, Melissa Brewer, Michelle Kraft and Marilyn Westfall.’-alliance/

Here is an introduction to Lubbock author Richard Jespers and here’s a local book store Hester Books on 34th Street some may not have visited operated by Renee Hester

Another Lubbock author is Thomas J. Nichols, former Chief of Police of the City of Lubbock who authored three mystery books Color of the Prism (2000) Lubbock Public Library 6 copies FIC NICH Adult Fiction $17.95 paper $5 e-book ABE Books good condition $10.87, Voices in the Fog (2008) $19.95 paper $5 e-book ABE Books good $11.08, and Sweet Emily (2012) $17.95 paperback $5 e-book ABE Books new $17.31 incl s&h.


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