DescriptionBill Bomar (American, 1919-1991)
Present Personas, 1952
Oil with mixed media on canvas
36 x 22 inches (91.4 x 55.9 cm)
Initialed lower right: BB
By descent to present owner, Judson Nail Petty.
Bill Bomar was one of the driving forces behind the artistic development of the Fort Worth Circle, a group of artists and friends who dominated the art
scene in Fort Worth from the 1930s to the 1950s. They explored contemporary art movements, especially Modernism, Surrealism, and non-objective
abstraction. In fact, Bomar may have been the most influential member of the group. He certainly increased their exposure to the newest styles and
artists by facilitating the exchange of art and ideas between Fort Worth and New York, two places where Bomar often hosted members of the Fort
Worth Circle. Most likely, distinct from the Dallas Nine, it was through this exposure that the Fort Worth Circle was influenced more by contemporary
international art than by American Regionalism.
Bomar's passionate interest in abstraction developed from his exposure to the rich artistic environment of New York City and the work of leading edge
artists of his day. After moving to New York permanently in 1941, he studied with John Sloan, and then with master abstractionist, Hans Hoffman.
Splitting time between New York and his parents' home in Fort Worth, Bomar eagerly collected paintings by Paul Klee, Wassily Kandinsky, and Amedeo
Modigliani, and housed them in his Chelsea Hotel studio-apartment.
Having been diagnosed with cerebral palsy at a young age, writing became increasingly difficult for Bomar, which is why so many of his paintings are
either initialed or unsigned. He eventually founded the Old Jail Art Center in Albany, Texas with members of his family including his cousin, Reilly Nail.
The Bomar paintings being offered in this auction are from the collection of his descendent Judson Nail Petty. Since most of Bomar's works are held
in museums or private collections of family members and friends, this is an especially rare and precious opportunity for collectors. It is unlikely that a
similar collection of his works will be available again anytime soon.
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