Galleries collaborate to honor lifetime achievements of renowned San Marcos born artist Bill Hutson

Staff Reports

SAN MARCOS – The Art of Bill Hutson is a unique city-wide exhibition celebrating the work of artist and San Marcos native Bill Hutson. Five separate and overlapping gallery shows will serve as a homecoming of sorts for Hutson, born in 1936 and raised in the Dunbar neighborhood of San Marcos, Texas, who later became one of the most innovative artists of his generation.

Bill Hutson, Homestead with signs, symbols and numbers, acrylic on canvas, 1979–1990, 83 ¾ x 113 ¾ inches. Artwork courtesy of the Phillips Museum of Art at Franklin & Marshall College. All rights reserved. Photograph: Madelynn Mesa.

“In spite of being internationally renowned, Bill Hutson remains a virtual unknown in his hometown, and we want to change that,” said Linda Kelsey-Jones, co-creator of the show and curator for two of the individual gallery displays.

This exhibition brings over sixty unique objects and process drawings to the artist’s hometown of San Marcos for the very first time. The Art of Bill Hutson is a collaboration between the Calaboose African American History Museum, the Price Center, the San Marcos Art League, the Texas State Galleries, and the Walkers’ Gallery. 

The art on view is on temporary loan from the artist’s studio and from the Phillips Museum at Franklin Marshall College, where Hutson is Professor Emeritus. Hutson, now 86 years old, currently lives and works in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

“Bill Hutson’s vibrant, dynamic compositions are layered with historical references and personal symbolism,” said show co-creator and curator for the Texas State displays, Margo Handwerker, Texas State Galleries.  “While the works are frequently abstract, they give form to often intangible feelings and encounters that resist representation in conventional ways, many of them unique among Black Americans whose experiences are shaped by perseverance and pride in the face of generational displacement and marginalization,” she added.

Hutson’s Homestead is the centerpiece of the show, which hangs in the Texas State Galleries through the Spring term. The piece refers to the multiple, and often paradoxical, definitions of the term.

“There was an invincible quality about San Marcos; a concealed magnetism, covert vitality and sacrosanct ambiance generated by the town’s past. I wanted to convey the natural and metaphysical dimensions of a homestead,” writes Hutson in referring to the piece.

Individual and overlapping gallery shows — each featuring different works by Hutson — are on display as follows:

The Calaboose African American History Museum

The Art of Bill Hutson: The Opening
January 8–April 2
200 W. Martin Luther King Dr., San Marcos, TX

The Price Center

The Art of Bill Hutson: Works in 3D
January 15 – February 26
222 W. San Antonio St., San Marcos, TX

The San Marcos Art Center

The Art of Bill Hutson: Image of Scorpius
January 12–March 20
117 N. Guadalupe St., San Marcos, TX

Texas State Galleries

The Art of Bill Hutson: Homestead
September 15– May 18
233 West Sessom, San Marcos, TX

Walkers Gallery @ the San Marcos Public Library

The Art of Bill Hutson: Trees are never finished. . .
January 12 – April 9
625 E. Hopkins St., San Marcos, TX

The collaboration is the first of its kind between all these separate arts entities in San Marcos. It is being made possible through the support of the San Marcos Arts Commission, the City of San Marcos, the San Marcos Public Library, the Phillips Museum of Art, and Bill Hutson. 

Related events and activities will be presented separately. Planning is underway for a February 12 reception for the show. For more information, please visit

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