The Oklahoma State Senate dedicated artwork Tuesday depicting two of Oklahoma’s most beautiful landscapes, the Wichita Mountains and the Arkansas River
The Clayton Taylor family sponsored Three Forks on the Arkansas River by Oklahoma artist Wayne Cooper. The region around the Arkansas, Neosho (Grand), and Verdigris Rivers, in present Wagoner, Muskogee, and Cherokee counties, was the site of significant Euroamerican settlement in Oklahoma. In the early 1800s these streams were thought to be three forks of the Arkansas River. The area’s rich resources drew many Indian nations, including the Caddo, Osage, and Wichita. Later on, it became a thoroughfare linking northeastern Indian Territory to north Texas and to Missouri and was regularly used by traders, emigrants, and the military.
Cooper is an internationally known artist, who specializes in Western Art. His upbringing in Oklahoma and Indian roots, are the subject of many of his artistic creations. He is listed in Artists USA , Who’s Who in the Midwest, Who’s Who in American Art, International Who’s Who in Art and Antiques, Universal Directory of the Art and Personalities of the Americas, and others. His works, oils, water colors, charcoals, pencil, sculptures (bronzes) and lithographs are in many private and public collections worldwide, including the Oklahoma State Capitol.
Clayton Taylor serves as the principal of the Taylor Group, a full-service lobbying and consulting firm specializing in Oklahoma business issues that he established in 1994. A native Oklahoman, Taylor grew up on a small family ranch that his family still operates near Oktaha in Muskogee County. His wife, Marnie, is the President and CEO of the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits.
The other landscape, Wichita Mountains, was painted by famous artist Oscar Brousse Jacobson and is a gift of R.L. and Carlene Rollins.
Jacobsen was born in Sweden in 1882 and immigrated to Kansas in 1890 where he studied at Bethany College and went on to receive his bachelor’s degree in 1908. He continued his studies at the Louvre in Paris, in Sweden, and in Denmark. In 1916, he received a master of fine arts degree at Yale University and in 1941, a doctorate of fine arts from Bethany College in Lindsborg. He worked as director of the School of Art at the University of Oklahoma from 1915 to 1954.
His name is synonymous with early-twentieth-century art in Oklahoma. Educated in Europe and America, he tirelessly promoted all arts to the young state.
Traditional Plains Indian art is now inexorably bound to him and to the University of Oklahoma. He founded the Association of Oklahoma Artists and formally advised the Works Progress Administration’s Federal Art Project for Oklahoma in the 1930s. A prolific painter of Southwestern landscapes, Jacobson exhibited his workout through the U.S. and Europe. He passed away in Norman, Oklahoma in 1966.
Rollins is the executive director of the Oklahoma Consumer Finance Association and the President of New Horizons Travel Agency. He formerly served as the executive director of the Small Loan Council of Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Bondsman Association and the Oklahoma City Junior Chamber of Commerce.
The landscapes are a project of the Oklahoma State Senate Historical Preservation Fund, Inc. founded by retired Senator Charles Ford of Tulsa. Since its creation, the nonprofit has raised over $2 million in private funds and commissioned over 140 paintings that are showcased in the State Capitol at no expense to taxpayers.
This and other art commissioned by the Oklahoma State Senate Historical Preservation Fund, Inc. can be found on the Internet at: http://www.oksenate.gov/senate_artwork/artwork_index_full.aspx.