Shouting Silence: Five Decades of Works on Paper, showcases the breadth of Dorothy Antoinette LaSelle’s drawing practice throughout the 20th century. Works in the exhibition include abstract charcoal on paper drawings from the mid 1940’s, a selection of graphic ink on paper drawings from the 1950’s and a group of oil pastels, a medium she focused on from the 1960’s – 1980’s. Shouting Silence is the second exhibition of LaSelle’s work at Inman Gallery and the first since taking on the representation of the LaSelle estate.
Additionally, the gallery is pleased to announce that we will be presenting a solo booth of LaSelle’s paintings from 1946-1956 at the 2017 Art Dealers Association of America (ADAA) Art Show in New York. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to present Ms. LaSelle’s work on this important stage; the Shouting Silence exhibition is just the beginning of our commitment to bringing her work to the notice of collectors, scholars and museums nationwide.
Born in Beatrice, NE, in 1901, LaSelle earned a BA from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 1923 and an MA from the University of Chicago in 1926. After working briefly at Stephens College in Missouri, she traveled to Europe and spent six months studying in England, Italy, and France. What started as a temporary position at Texas State College for Women (now Texas Women’s University), in Denton, Texas, in 1928, turned into a full time position when she became responsible for development of the art history program at the school. She remained at TSCW/TWU until her retirement in 1972, a dedicated teacher for 44 years. Despite her dedication to teaching, she asserted in a letter dated 1986 to her dealer Murray Smither that she was “a Painter who tried to teach – (and not the other way around.)”
LaSelle recognized the influence of both Hans Hofmann and Lazlo Moholy-Nagy on her painting practice, which by the mid-1930s was resolutely abstract, a lonely activity in a region steeped in narrative and representational traditions. In 1944, she enrolled in Hofmann's summer school in Provincetown, MA. After that time, she alternated between living part of the year in Denton and part of the year in Provincetown, at the artists' colony where she first went to study with Hofmann.
The artist received some critical attention in her lifetime, with a solo exhibition at Rose Fried Gallery in NY in 1950, accompanied by an enthusiastic review in the NY Times, along with solo exhibitions at the Dallas Museum of Art (1948) and the Ft. Worth Art Center (now the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth) in 1959. In her lifetime, two museums acquired Ms. LaSelle’s work, the Dallas Museum of Art (1972) and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (1995). Since her passing in 2002 at the age of 100, the Dallas Museum of Art and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth have made significant acquisitions from the estate, and very recently, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston has selected five drawings to add to their collection.