Here's a sweet, little treasure Rebecca Edwards found in her search for new photos of our cover boy Maynard Dixon.
At first I thought it was too good to be true, so I forwarded it to several Dixon experts and I just got a call from Don Hagerty and he confirms it came out of the John Dixon estate (note the Thunderbird fob in his pocket). John Dixon is Maynard's son and actually I met him, in Santa Fe, back in the nineties when Ed Mell and I attended a Dixon art show at the New Mexico Museum of Art.
The Real Mystery
None of the Dixon experts I talked to can ID the painting he is working on in the photo. They have never seen it before, so, somewhere out there is another treasure waiting to be found.
Here's a sweet little painting that has been found, and a friend of mine owns it and is getting set to sell it.
And here is one of Dixon's giant murals, "Red Butte" on display at the Booth Museum in Cartersville, Georgia.
So, what is the power behind Dixon's work?
Dixon didn't shun modernist views in art. In fact, he resigned from the influential Bohemian Club in San Francisco because of the criticism of his modernist infusions into his artwork. Dixon was a progressive leader in the San Francisco art world in the 1920s. As Dixon's biographer, Don Hagerty put it, "Dixon believed in the sure inspiration of nature, but also made emphatic statements that championed abstract painting." This is exactly what gives his artwork power and why it resonates to this day.
He wasn't afraid of the future and he wasn't afraid to do the work. That's a hard combo to beat.
"Inspiration is for amateurs—the rest of us just show up and get to work.”