Frank Dolejska

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Frank  Dolejska Young King
Young King, c. 1965
lithograph
12.5 x 10.5 in
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Frank  Dolejska

Frank Dolejska

Frank Dolejska Description

FRANK DOLEJSKA (1921-1989)

Born in Houston, Texas, Frank Dolejska studied under Ola McNeill Davidson along with fellow student, Robert Preusser. After serving in World War II, Dolejska returned to Houston where was a founding member and curator for the Contemporary Arts Association (now Contemporary Arts Museum). He began working with metal, creating sculpture with copper and lead. Along with other craftsmen in Houston, he co-founded Handmakers in 1957. Dolejska’s paintings are rare because he intentionally destroyed many of them.

Selected Biographical and Career Highlights

  • 1921 Born in Houston, Texas
  • 1939-40 Museum School, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       Served in U.S. Army

  • 1948-56 Curator, Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, Texas
  • 1957 Founded Handmakers
  • 1966-86 Employed by Faroy, Inc., Houston, Texas
  • 1989 Died in Houston, Texas

Selected Prizes, Awards

·       Houston Annual: Honorable Mention for Purchase Prize 1939; Honorable Mention 1938, 1949, 1951, 1953

  • 1938 Honorable Mention, Landscape with Two Trees, watercolor
  • 1939 Honorable Mention Purchase Prize, Music in Brasses, oil
  • 1949 Honorable Mention, Luminescence, watercolor
  • 1951 Honorable Mention, Undergrowth, casein 
  • 1953 Honorable Mention, Tempest-Sea, Wind, Sky, casein

·       Texas Watercolor Society: Materials Prize 1952

  • 1952 Materials Prize, Sunrise, watercolor

Selected Exhibitions

·       1937-39 Works by Southeast Texas Artists 1st-3rd Annual Exhibition, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1938 14th Annual Exhibition of Work by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas (honorable mention)

·       1938 Golden Jubilee Exhibition of the State Fair of Texas—Texas Painting, Drawing, Pastels and Sculpture, Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

·       1939 15th Annual Exhibition of Work by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas (honorable mention purchase prize)

·       1939 Texas Paintings (State Fair), Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

·       1940 1st Texas General Exhibit, circulated: Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Witte Museum, San Antonio; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

·       1947 22nd Annual Exhibition of Work by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas

·       1948 Solo, Port Arthur Art Association, Port Arthur, Texas

·       1948 10th Texas General Exhibition 1948–1949, circulated: Witte Museum, San Antonio; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

·       1949 Solo, Corpus Christi Art Museum, Corpus Christi, Texas, traveled to: Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1949 Texas A&I College, Kingsville, Texas

·       1949 24th Annual Exhibition of Works by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas (honorable mention)

·       1950 12th Annual Exhibition of Texas Painting and Sculpture, 1950–1951, circulated: Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Witte Museum, San Antonio; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

·       1950 Art Association of New Orleans, Louisiana

·       1950 25th Annual Exhibition of Works by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas

·       1951 26th Annual Exhibition of Works by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas (honorable mention)

·       1951 Solo, Frank Dolejska: Paintings, Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

·       1951 Margaret Brown Gallery, Boston, Massachusetts

·       1951 Solo, Paintings by Frank Dolejska, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas

·       1951 13th Annual Exhibition of Texas Painting and Sculpture 1951–1952, circulated: Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Witte Museum, San Antonio, Texas

·       1951 Colorado Springs Graphics Exhibition, Colorado Springs, Colorado

·       1951–52 Annual Exhibition, Texas Fine Arts Association, Austin, Texas

·       1952 Texas Watercolor Society 3rd Annual Exhibition, Witte Museum, San Antonio, Texas; Museum of Fine Art, Houston, Texas (materials prize)

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

·       1952 27th Annual Exhibition of Works by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas

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

·       1953 28th Annual Exhibition of Works by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas (honorable mention)

·       1954–55 29th–30th Annual Exhibition of Works by Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas

·       1955 31st Annual Exhibition of Houston Artists, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas

·       2004 A Selection of Art Made in Houston 1950-1965, Brazos Projects, Brazos Bookstore, Houston, Texas

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

·       2007 Texas Modern: The Rediscovery of Early Texas Abstraction (1935-1965), Martin Museum of Art, Baylor University, Waco, Texas (catalogue)

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

·       2011 Portrait of Houston: 1900–2011, Alliance Gallery, Houston Arts Alliance, Houston, Texas (catalogue)

·       2011 Southeast Texas Art: Cross Currents and Influences 1925–1965, Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, Texas

·       2013 Restless Heart: The Collectors’ Quest to Find Texas in Art, San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, San Angelo, Texas

·       2014 Left Bank on the Bayou: Houston Avant-garde Art and Theatre in the 1930s, O’Kane Gallery, University of Houston-Downtown, Houston, Texas

·       2014 A New Visual Vocabulary: Developments in Texas Modernism 1935-1965, One Allen Center, Lobby Gallery, 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

  • Ben Taub Hospital, Houston, Texas (fountain)
  • Downtown Recreation Center, Houston, Texas (sculpture)

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