“It is important that we celebrate the distinguished career achievements of these artists which have enhanced the lives of so many.”
The Texas State Legislature, in partnership with the Texas Commission on the Arts, will make appointments on Monday, March 25, 2019 to the positions of state poet laureate, state musician, state two-dimensional artist, and state three-dimensional artist. The positions, created by SB 1043 of the 77th Legislature, are filled for one-year terms. The eight appointees for 2019 and 2020 were selected by a legislative-appointed committee for the exceptional quality of their work and for their outstanding commitment to the arts in Texas.
The 2019 and 2020 appointees will be formally announced through House and Senate Resolutions at the Capitol on March 25. The 2019 appointees include Texas Poet Laureate Carrie Fountain of Austin, Texas State Musician Little Joe Hernandez of Temple, Texas State Two-Dimensional Artist Mary McCleary of Nacogdoches, and Texas State Three-Dimensional Artist Rick Lowe of Houston. The 2020 appointees include Texas Poet Laureate Emmy Pérez of McAllen, Texas State Musician Emily Gimble of Austin, Texas State Two-Dimensional Artist Earlie Hudnall, Jr. of Houston, and Texas State Three-Dimensional Artist Gabriel Dawe of Dallas.
“The great talents of the 2019-2020 State Artists, along with all of those who were nominated, help contribute to a distinctive cultural identity that makes Texas a great place to live, work and visit,” said State Representative John Cyrier, Chairman of the House Committee on Culture, Recreation, & Tourism. “It is important that we celebrate the distinguished career achievements of these artists which have enhanced the lives of so many.”
Each State Artist reflects the state’s diversity and high-quality artistic offerings. Nominees must be native Texans or have resided in the state for at least five years. They must have attained the highest levels of excellence and success in their respective disciplines and earned a statewide, regional or national reputation for their high caliber work.
Any Texas citizen was able to nominate an artist in any of the four categories and self-nominations were encouraged. The Texas Commission on the Arts received all nominations and developed a list of finalists for submission to the Texas Poet Laureate, State Musician and State Artist Committee. The committee, composed of members appointed by the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives, made the final selections. The next call for nominations will take place in the fall of 2020.