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“Western Movements” with Rea Baldridge at Liggett Studios
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“Western Movements” with Rea Baldridge at Liggett Studios

The exhibit recalls what brought many early Oklahomans to settle in the area, according to Gallerist Steve Liggett. The series of work showcased in this exhibit focus on this movement of settlers but also highlights the beauty of the cultures that were usurped.

 

Rea Baldridge
Chicks & Ducks & Geese…, 2022
Oil on Canvas

This item is reminiscent of the greater theme of the collection of being about the Oklahoma Boomers “rushing in and trying to get the land away or staking their claim,” Ligget says. Baldridge again emphasizes the movement and commotion with her brush strokes.

 

Rea Baldridge
The Purple Sage, 2022
Oil on Canvas

The work has an intangible quality where you’ve felt like you might have “seen this somewhere or there is something about this,” says Liggett. It is similar to other pieces that we are more aware of, such as the American artist Thomas Gilcrease’s Native American illustrations. However, Baldridge’s work, “her brushstrokes and her quickness and her ability to do almost like everything in movement,” adds Liggett. This piece is another work that illustrates “our memory is of the past and that she’s speaking to many different layers.” She is using the title of ‘purple sage’ as a double entendre to both be referring to her color palette, but also to refer to royalty, the great sage, the shaman, or the wise person, according to Liggett.

 

 

Rea Baldridge
Your Land is My Land II
, 2022
Oil on Canvas

A piece that many Oklahoma could relate to as it shows, “how the Land Run was so wonderful,” Liggett says. “I really love this piece. I love it for many reasons,” he adds. Native Americans, according to Liggett, “opened up their houses and said, Come on in, just run in and grab some land. And of course, that’s just not the way it was.”

 

He adds that the piece is reminiscent of Woody Guthrie’s song Oklahoma Hills or the University of Oklahoma’s Booner Sooner fight songs. The piece “also hits really close to something that people in this part of the country still think is the epitome of painting, which is expressionism or Impressionism,” he says.  Rea Baldridge has taken these concepts, the iconography of Oklahoma history to be “sort of a blur, like the memory of the past.”

 

Date

June 14, 2022

Category

Liggett Studio

Tags

Liggett Studio, Oklahoma, Tulsa