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Interview with Richard Stout, conducted by Sarah C. Reynolds.

Getting started

I was born [in Beaumont, Texas] at the height of the depression. We survived. My older brother was given piano lessons; I was given violin lessons. Then at the age of 12 I was given formal art lessons in classical drawing—it was a small group of us. I learned how to render in charcoal. Right away I became very involved in the new Beaumont Museum. Through the city schools I had very good art teachers; I entered several scholastic art awards contests each year and won lots of awards. Then in my junior year in high school my aunts in Cincinnati had me come up to the Cincinnati Art Academy for summer classes, and the following summer—the summer after I graduated from high school—I also went to the Cincinnati Art Academy. That fall I went to the Art Institute of Chicago on full scholarship, and stayed on scholarship the entire four years I was there.


By Richard Stout, 1957. Oil on canvas. Courtesy of the artist.

Doing reconnaissance

I didn’t know where I was going to go after school so I arranged to get a Greyhound bus ticket that would allow me to go to several cities working my way back to Houston, and on to Beaumont. I didn’t want to consider moving to the west coast or the south. The west coast seemed to be too far away for me intellectually, and the south—I felt nothing would happen there for a very long time.

I knew New York from many trips to New York as a student. I spent time in Boston and Washington and Baltimore and Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Cleveland and Cincinnati. I spent time in Milwaukee, Minneapolis, St. Louis, Kansas City, Dallas, and finally Houston—in each of these places checking out the Chamber of Commerce to find out what the per capita tax was, what cost of living was, what new art things that were happening, and [considering] whether it would be a comfortable place to be and what the people were like. And I decided I’d do this for Houston, too, even though it’s awfully close to home. I found that Houston was by far the most interesting of the places I’d been.

I went back to Beaumont, had a garage sale of paintings and the like, and raised $400 and moved to Houston with one name that had been given to me of someone who might introduce me around and that was Preston Frazier. He put me up in his warehouse building.

Fast friends

Henri and Leila Gadbois had a party the next night at their house on Bingle Road. It was a house built by Robert Preusser, the painter who had just left Houston for MIT—an important abstract painter in Houston from the 30s and 40s. At that party I met about 30 people who would be very close friends through the next several years, including Herb and Ava Jean Mears and Polly and Lee Marsters—a great list of people who were artists and collectors, and these were to be my closest friends for a long period of time. Many still are. That was in November of 1957.

I quickly found a small apartment on the 1200 block of Bissonnet to rent—a garage apartment. It was so right in the middle of “swell” Houston; I could climb my steps to my apartment and look down and see all the swells of Houston having their martinis on silver [trays] in the backyard—very impressive. You wouldn’t see anything like that in Chicago—not in the part of Chicago that I lived in.

Questions & Answers

what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
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Source:  OpenStax, Houston reflections: art in the city, 1950s, 60s and 70s. OpenStax CNX. May 06, 2008 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10526/1.2
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