Lee Thad Dusk at the Hudson Wren Memorial Park in Wilson Arkansas
Thad Lee, "Dusk at the Hudson Wren Memorial Park in Wilson, Arkansas," 2023; Archival Pigment Print; Courtesy of the artist

Mallory and Wurtzburger Galleries

2023 Wilson Fellowship: Danny Broadway, Claire Hardy, Thad Lee, and John Ruskey

Jul 14, 2024 - Sep 29, 2024

Organized by: Dixon Gallery and Gardens

In 2023, the Dixon launched a partnership with the town of Wilson, Arkansas, to help bring cultural activity to the Arkansas Delta through an artist residency program. The Dixon selected four artists for the inaugural cohort of Wilson Fellows, Danny Broadway, Claire Hardy, Thad Lee, and John Ruskey, to pilot the program and mine the region’s unique landscape for creative inspiration. Throughout the late spring, summer, autumn, and early winter, the 2023 Fellows planted roots in the community, visually documenting Wilson’s landscape and its people as both the seasons and the town itself evolved.

The 2023 inaugural class of Wilson Fellows are a diverse group, all of whom found Wilson and its surrounding environment to be inspiring. Memphis-based painter and educator Danny Broadway’s contemplative graphite drawings and oil painting distill the people and landscapes of Wilson into iconic images of the Arkansas Delta. Claire Hardy, a painter originally from California now living in Sewickley, Pennsylvania, invokes historic artists including George Inness and Claude Monet in her glowing landscapes of cotton country. Thad Lee, a photographer and filmmaker from Oxford, Mississippi, seamlessly blends images of decay and renewal as he chronicles the life of the town through images of agriculture, the old cotton gin, and blazing sunsets. A resident of Clarksdale, Mississippi, river guide and painter John Ruskey focuses on the vital importance of the Mississippi River and its wildlife to the Wilson region in his fantastical watercolors and full-sized canoe, carved with the help of students at Wilson’s progressive Delta School. The beauty and variety of the art on display in this Mallory/Wurtzburger exhibition is truly a fitting celebration of the first year of the Wilson Fellowship.