Gertrude Barnstone

Gertrude Barnstone


Gertrude Barnstone was born in Houston, Texas. She studied art at the Museum School (now Glassell School). Though interested in art, she graduated from Rice University with a degree in English. In 1953, Barnstone was commissioned to create a sculpture of two large, curved aluminum pieces for the exterior of the U.S. Green Stamp building in Houston. She continued to create sculptures, working largely with steel, but also with wire, glass, mirrors, fabric, and other materials. She was a beloved artist, activist and Civic Champion, and  is remembered as a founding modernist of the Houston art scene post World War II. 

Selected Biographical and Career Highlights 

·       1925 Born in Houston, Texas

·       1932 Museum School, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       Art Department, Stanford University, Stanford, California

·       1945 BA, English, Rice Institute, Houston, Texas

·       1969 Welding, Houston Community College, Houston, Texas

·       1984 Visiting Artist, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas

·       Resides in Houston, Texas

Selected Exhibitions

·       1936, 1940, 1947 12th, 16th, 22nd Annual Exhibition of Work by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1950 3rd Southwestern Exhibition of Prints and Drawings, Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

·       1950–52 25th–27th Annual Exhibition of Work by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1952 Sixteen Texas Painters, Betty McLean Gallery, Dallas, Texas

·       1952 14th Annual Exhibition of Texas Paintings and Sculpture, circulated: Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Witte Museum, San Antonio; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1953–54 28th–29th Annual Exhibition of Work by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1959 Experiments in Art and Technology, Brooklyn Museum, New York, New York

·       1974 Texas Women Artists, Laguna Gloria Art Museum, Austin, Texas

·       1979 Women Insight, Women and Their Work Gallery, Austin, Texas

·       1979 FIRE! Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, Texas (catalogue)

·       1980 Sun Seeker Labyrinth, Houston Festival, Houston, Texas

·       1982 Sixteen Sculptures in the Park, Houston, Texas

·       1982 Graham Gallery, Houston, Texas

·       1983 The Bayou Show, Houston Festival, Houston, Texas

·       1983 Texas Sculpture Symposium, Austin, Texas

·       1984 Lost in the Woods, Found in the Woods, Houston, Texas

·       1984–85 Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition, Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York

·       1985 Texas Sculpture Symposium, Dallas, Texas

·       1985 East End Show, Lawndale Art Annex, Houston, Texas

·       1985 A Texas Dozen, 12 Sculptures, Art Studio Gallery, Beaumont, Texas

·       1985 Award, Texas Sculpture Association, Dallas, Texas

·       1985 A Sampler, Thirty Sculptors, Longview Museum, Longview, Texas

·       1987 Women Artists of Three State, Dallas Women’s Caucus for Arts, Dallas, Texas

·       1987 Hand-Thought-Artist-Wrought-Furniture, Galveston Art Center, Galveston, Texas

·       1987 Galveston Art League Annual Exhibition, Galveston, Texas

·       1988 Space Alternative: A Conceptual Sculptural Exhibition, Art League of Houston, Texas

·       1988 Good Housekeeping: Furniture by Artists, Blue Collar Gallery, San Antonio, Texas

·       1988 American Artists Project, Neiman-Marcus, Dallas, Texas, traveling

·       1989 Flights of Fancy, Texas Fine Arts Association, Austin, Texas

·       1989 Illuminations: New Visions in Light as Art, Gallery of Functional Art, Santa Monica, California

·       1989 Art and Artifacts, Houston, Texas

·       1989 New Trends in Southwest Furniture, Economos Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico

·       1990 L. A. Art Fair, Los Angeles

·       1993 Artables Gallery, Houston, Texas

·       1993, 1996 Ruskin Place Art Festival, Sea Side, Florida

·       1993 Contemporary Art Furniture, Artera Gallery, Houston, Texas

·       1994 Clay and Metal, Artables Gallery, Houston, Texas

·       1996 Won’t You Step Into My Parlor, Artables Gallery, Houston, Texas

·       1994–97 Outdoor Sculpture School, North Harris County College, Houston, Texas

·       1995 Gertrude Barnstone: Up Front, Houston, Texas

·       1996 Chandelier Show, Gallery of Functional Art, Santa Monica, California

·       1997 Diverse Works, Houston, Texas

·       1997 Inaugural Exhibition, The Artfull Garden, Houston, Texas

·       2004–05 Rice Institute and the Visual Arts in Houston: 19001960, Fondren Library, Rice University, Houston, Texas

·       2006 Houston Art in Houston Collections: Works from 1900 to 1965, Heritage Society Museum, Houston, Texas

·       2006–07 Of This Vast State: Women Artists of Texas , 19001960, Women’s Museum, Dallas, Texas

·       2008 Founders of Houston Art: Thirty Artists Who Led the Way, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, Texas

·       2009 Texas Paper: Watercolors, Pastels and Drawings from the Lone Star State, 1938-2008, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, Texas

·       2010 Third Anniversary Show: A Tribute to Houston Artists, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, Texas

·       2013 Rhythms of Modernism, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, Texas

·       2014 The Elegant Line: Figure Studies by Gertrude Barnstone, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, Texas

·       2015 Bayou City Chic: Progressive Streams of Modern Art in Houston, Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Christi, Texas (catalogue)

Selected Public Collections

  • Menil Collection, Houston, Texas
  • Astrodome County Park, Houston, Texas
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