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Unconventional Wisdom


This October promises visual spectacle and emotive experiences at Paseo Originals Art Gallery when established art icon Bert Seabourn and emerging artist Don Holladay will come together for the feature exhibit "Unconventional Wisdom" which will open Friday, October 5th and run through the 28th of the month. While all artists tend to carry a unique take on life and their artistic practices, expressionists take the cake! In art, Expressionism is the practice of depicting the subjective emotions and responses that objects and events arouse in the artist, so it only makes sense that expressionist be one-of-a-kind. From abstract to representational Seabourn and Holladay will be debuting their best new works for an exposé which is assured to delight the senses and leave the soul quivering.

You could say Bert Seabourn has been around the block, but it would be an understatement. A selected listing of Seabourn paintings currently in permanent collections would include: The Vatican in Rome, Italy; China's National Palace Museum in Taipei, Taiwan; Moscow's State University Branch in Ulyanovsk, Russia; The American Embassy in London; The Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC; the President Gerald R. Ford Library Collection in Ann Arbor, MI; the President George and Barbara Bush collection in Houston, TX; the Fred Jones Oklahoma University Museum of Art, Norman, OK; and in Oklahoma City, The Oklahoma State Art Collection; the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum; and the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. His artistic resume is long enough to make even the most aberrant reader shudder at it's shear volume. His relentless journey in the arts has spanned several decades and experienced several evolutions in style. Speaking about his creative process Bert denotes, "Painting should test our creative elements. Order versus chaos, contemplative versus emotional, raw versus refined. I try to make each painting a fusion of design, color, form and composition, using a layering of texture with drips, smears, splatters and runs. The responsibility of the artist is to make a unique visual experience for himself and the viewer. Ultimately, each painting is an arena for the artist's own emotional tug of war. If it leads the viewer to react, think, or make a judgment, it has attained some success." In light of his description on creating art one might imagine organized chaos and their vision would be very near the truth. Seabourn utilizes his thumbs, paper towels and unexpected implements to control his paint while simultaneously pulling fine masterful strokes with high quality sable brushes. Watching him create the layers in his work with such swift dedication is impactive enough to strike any viewer with sensory overload. His creations are strikingly emotional, sometimes playful and often accented by quick wit; all things which have made him the highly collected artist that he is today. For his feature exhibit this October Seabourn will shed light on bold, invigorating new paintings which span the gamut from abstract to representational and vehement to chucklesome.

Don Holladay is an emerging artist who has found his platform in the Oklahoma art scene over the last few years. A former Board Chairman of the Oklahoma Arts Institute, Holladay holds a law degree from the College of Law, University of Oklahoma. Don's work has appeared in solo and group shows across the state, including the recent 2011 Seven-State Biennial exhibition. His art has been procured by numerous individuals, businesses and organizations across Oklahoma. In his studio lies an etching press and many of his works on paper originate from printmaking processes; where printing inks and oils remain his two primary media. Holladay's predominant focuses have been both figurative and non-objective works. Referring to his process Don emphasizes, "I paint in long spurts, usually two and three days at a time. I try to be hasty and work fast. Every time too much planning creeps in, the end result for me has a tendency not to look spontaneous. My work has a personal connection to events in my life, such as travel or remembered places and times and often the title of an image becomes integral to the piece; giving the viewers a glimpse into the motivating influence." Adding, "I prefer painting directly onto a paper surface that has been altered. Using an etching press, I often begin a painting by running an inked textured surface through the press. These background traces that emerge give dimension to a piece and allow me to escape the daunting task of staring at a blank surface. By initially overloading the content I can begin the process of reduction; evolving to the simplest possible presentation that works. I want every piece to have a sense of composition, and to convey something that hopefully allows a viewer to connect from some reference point; personal or otherwise." His figural work is, in a sense, crushing; often embodying a feeling of dread which lies subtly under the surface of the seemingly earthy and highly tactile pieces. Holladay's non-objective artworks appear rooted in an organic geometry accentuated by rough pattern and the juxtaposition of warm and cool color. Don will be unveiling a selection of his best new works for the October feature "Unconventional Wisdom".

The opening night reception will take place on Friday, October 5th from 6:00-10:00 PM during the Paseo First Friday Art Walk and will be followed by an artist talk on the following day Saturday, October 6th starting at 1:00 PM. On Sunday, October 21st from 1:00 to 4:00 PM the artists will demonstrate their respective creative practices in the gallery during Sunday on Paseo Creek hosted by the Paseo Creek Art Galleries. The exhibit will come to a climax during the cocktail closing reception on Saturday, October 27th from 6:30-9:00 PM. The last opportunity to view the "Unconventional Wisdom" exhibition will be on Sunday, October 28th. The exhibit and associated events are free and open to the public. Paseo Originals Art Gallery is a private fine art gallery located in the Historic Paseo Arts District at the south end of Paseo Creek and has been voted the Best Local Art Gallery by the citizens of Oklahoma City. Focusing on an eclectic collection of contemporary fine art, fine craft Americana, new media, furniture, handcrafted jewelry, and small and large scale sculpture, the gallery represents established, mid-career and emerging artists of exceptional caliber. With one of the largest spaces in the Paseo District, the gallery hosts monthly exhibits defined in three gallery exhibit spaces featuring both national and international artists who exemplify the unique characteristics of a collectable fine artist. Featuring bold, ingenuitive and technically evolved artworks, Paseo Originals is dedicated to the beginning and established collector. The gallery is open Tuesday through Friday from 11am – 6pm, Saturday from 11am – 5pm and Sunday from 1pm – 5pm. Paseo Originals Art Gallery is located at 2920 Paseo Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73103. For more information on gallery events please visit the Paseo Originals website at

Unconventional Wisdom

Oct 5 – Oct 28, 2012