The Tyler Museum of Art is bringing it all back home.
Culminating more than four decades since the Junior League of Tyler, Inc. spearheaded community efforts to establish the Museum, the TMA is celebrating its ongoing partnership with JLT in Goodnight Rose City, a new exhibition opening to the public Sunday, July 13. The show runs through Sunday, Oct. 19 at the TMA, 1300 S. Mahon Ave. on the Tyler Junior College main campus. Admission is free.
Inspired by the popular children’s book published last year by the Junior League, Goodnight Rose City brings together three distinct perspectives celebrating the iconic themes and locations “that make Tyler such a unique place to live and work,” TMA Executive Director Chris Leahy said.
Organized by the TMA in collaboration with JLT, the exhibition showcases the 15 original watercolor book illustrations by local artist Lindsay Boone. Framing each illustration, archival photographs highlight historic views of the familiar Tyler subjects while original new images by photojournalist Herb Nygren Jr. of the Tyler Morning Telegraph capture views of present day.
In addition to the artwork, the Goodnight Rose City gallery will feature a “Book Nook” for young visitors to browse through copies of the book at their leisure – and enjoy the opportunity to create their own illustrations to hang in the gallery “and offer yet another take on what’s special about their hometown,” Leahy said.
Part of the impetus behind organizing this exhibition, Leahy said, was honoring the legacy of “The Picture Ladies” – a legendary group of volunteers from the Tyler Service League, Inc. (predecessor to the Junior League) who devoted countless hours to bringing art into the classroom for thousands of East Texas children from 1952 through the late 1960s. The efforts of “The Picture Ladies,” sharing culture with fifth- and sixth-grade students at a time when no art museum existed within a 100-mile radius of Tyler, laid the groundwork for the eventual establishment of the TMA at its current location in 1971.
Special events in connection with the exhibition include Family Days Saturday, Aug. 9 and Sept. 13, and free Seniors’ Days Monday, July 21, Aug. 18 and Sept. 15.
Presenting sponsor for Goodnight Rose City is the Junior League of Tyler, Inc. “Picture Ladies” sponsors are in memory of Nell Allen Bell by Allen Bell and Henry Bell, in honor of Eleanor M. Cameron by Hal and Brenda Cameron, in memory of Elizabeth Sweet Peacock Marsh by Betsy and Elmer Ellis, in memory of Frances Connally Morriss by Whit Morriss, Fran Morriss and Penny Morriss, in memory of Hallie Tom Powell by the Family of Hallie Tom Powell, in memory of Isabelle Windham Pounds by Ann Windham Wallace Vetter, and in memory of Mabel Sheehy by Mr. and Mrs. William Sheehy. Additional sponsorship support is provided by Trinity Mother Frances Hospitals and Clinics, Patron; Martha and Randy Key, Collectors’ Circle Gold; and Southside Bank, Corporate. The TMA extends special thanks for the exhibition to the Smith County Historical Society, Tyler Morning Telegraph and Jennifer Gaston.
The TMA, accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, is located at 1300 S. Mahon Ave. across from Wagstaff Gymnasium on the Tyler Junior College main campus. Regular hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and 1-5 p.m. Sunday; the Museum is closed Mondays and most major holidays. The TMA is supported by its Members and TJC. For information, call (903) 595-1001 or visit www.tylermuseum.org.