Frank Hursh: Lifetime artist and educator

Frank Hursh has led a fascinating life dedicated to the arts and arts education. In recounting his first aesthetical experience in painting: “I don't know what it was that took me back to that little room where (Rufino) Tamayo’s exhibit was, but I went back a little bit later and sat for about four hours in that room viewing Tamayo’s paintings. I absolutely left with tears in my eyes and that was the very first time that I had ever had really an aesthetic feeling of what paintings could do.”

Filmed on location in Frank Hursh’s studio in Queretaro, Mexico. Special thanks to the Hursh family. Filmed, edited and produced by Craig Dillenbeck and Erin Durham of the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts.

Transcript

Frank Hursh: That's where I had my first aesthetical experience in painting-- in the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts. They had a show of Diego Rivera and Siquerios and Rufino Tamayo. I don't know what it was that took me back to that little room where Tamayo’s exhibit was, but I went back a little bit later and sat for about four hours in that room viewing Tamayo’s paintings. I absolutely left with tears in my eyes and that was the very first time that I had ever had really an aesthetic feeling of what paintings could do. That was one of the most eye opening situations in my life-- when I realized that it did have a lot of power.

FH: You're sitting in front of something and are working with it. You're so intense upon this thing that your mind changes. Time goes out of the picture and you are concentrating on something. That happens in painting. At that moment, things began to flow and that's when things come easier and then you can move and you can do things like that and things just turn out.

FH: You can actually take the eye from one thing to the other thing. It can be done by brightness, by color, or by size. First you see, for instance, the first three things but then as you look over the painting you're going to pick up little things like this right here, and maybe coming through over here, or this part coming out.

FH: It takes discipline, it takes a lot of discipline. It is not easy and even though you put up a lot of things like a scratch, those things come with practice. It can be an instant or it can take you a very, very long time to do a painting. It doesn't matter. Time doesn’t matter in how that painting was painted. What is here is a painting. It doesn't matter if it was done in 10 seconds or in 60 hours.

FH: Most paintings people are going to come by and spend maybe a minute or two minutes and they go on. They don't sit and wait. But if you take and spend a lot of time sometimes, if it's a good painting, it'll come out-- you'll find it.

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