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Full size spread from
My Leatherette Reminder '82

Story and photographs © 2002 by JR Compton

Diary page by Gerald Burns
probably from David Searcy's Collection
It was on display at the show.
labeled a Holograph but it looks like the real thing.

 

Below on this page is reproduced the whole page of the detail drawing of Gerald Burns in John Walker's independent film, Clown White. I'm including it here, because it is in Gerald's own hand, and it reveals many aspects of him not widely known.

The dates are pretty obvious. The references may not be.

500 Exposition is Dallas' oldest established independent, co-op gallery. Georgia Stafford was a friend of both of ours and the subject of a letter I wrote to Gerald and read aloud the previous time I'd spoken at Paperbacks Plus. One of her pots is in my art collection. I don't know the specific references to Andersons or Lynette Miller. I assume they were exhibiting pieces at 500 that Gerald admired. D-Art is now called the Dallas Center for Contemporary Art, but then was a community art center and gallery.

John Walker is a professional still and motion photographer and another mutual friend. His Clown White independent film feaured Gerald as the clown, presumably from which the portrait Gerald sketched below was taken. The Lakewood Yacht Club was then a popular hangout for artists, although it was not close to the lake. Alison is Alison Kraft who was living with Gerald's good friend and fellow poet Robert Trammell. The Doll's House was Gerald's favorite topless bar, where he often sketched the dancers. DARts published his story about that activity, called Sketching Topless Dancers, and I'm struggling to reproduce it.

I also struggle to read Gerald's writing, which was often a challenge. Not sure who those people are -- Hyde, Haliday, La Foote, La Fontaine -- but he must have written letters to them that busy Friday evening.

The notation at the top of the page, "Great Moments in Art in Dallas #1," refers to the first of a long series of drawings that became Great Moments in Dallas ( and later Texas ) Art and included

Tolbert's Chili Parlor was an eating establishment across the street from El Centro College in deepest downtown Dallas. Owned by the Tolbert family, Francis X Tolbert senior was a famous Texas local color writer for the Dallas Morning News and renowned chili cooker, and his son, Frank Junior is an accomplished painter. Frank's wife Ann Stautberg is a superb Texas photographer. Frank and Ann ran the Chili Parlor then.

Charles Dee Mitchell is a noted and much published -- Dallas Morning News, Art Forum, Art in America, many others -- and popular art critic, whom, apparently, Gerald painted that Saturday. Mitchell is also the Vice President of Half Price Books, headquartered in Dallas, Texas.

Stumpbroke and Maple Points are lit reviews somewhere, I think. Not sure who Tucker or Mrs Anderson is.

Interesting that this seems to be early in Gerald's awareness of ( then Texas ( now Dallas ) Arts Revue, which he initially misspells Review, then corrects later in green ink. Already, it is, he notes, "full of my drawings." And that issue had several John Walker portraits in it. Ward is Mary Ward, controversial founder of D-Art, which this publication has almost always been critical of. We've discussed Tolbert already.

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Story and photographs © 2002 by J R Compton
Illustrations Copyright Gerald Burns.

All Rights Reserved. It is illegal to
reproduce these pages in any medium,
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