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Hornish & Partin – For the Love of Birds opens Oct. 27


Shari Hornish and Jan Partin return again to the Jaycee Park Center for the Arts in Irving (Directions), this time with a marvelous exhibit of art devoted to birds. You’re invited to the opening reception on Sunday, October 27 from 2-4pm.


Jan Partin has also exhibited in Irving Art Association’s animal art shows and is the gallery manager for Texas Visual Arts Association’s Downtown Gallery.



Shari specializes in birds and trees and is a frequent exhibitor in IAA’s animal art and Texas & Neighbors shows.

Artist Statement

Since there is probably an element of autobiography in every piece of fiction, then my paintings of birds are, to some degree, self-portraits. You may not recognize me up there on those limbs, light as air and free as – well, as a bird. It’s me, nevertheless.

I began painting trees about ten years ago because I love their shapes, textures, and colors.They’re very willing sitters and never complain or ask to be compensated for their time. The puniest sapling has more integrity than all but a handful of the people I know. And all trees are dedicated environmentalists. What’s not to admire about these gentle giants?

With each new painting, my focus zoomed in, moving closer and closer to the subject. The smallest branches and leaves began to appear. One day a bird asked to be included in the picture, and I reluctantly agreed. And soon there he sat – no, I sat – just as in many of my dreams, no longer a stodgy middle-aged woman but a vibrant creature surveying my leafy new world.

It’s not The Picture of Dorian Gray, just the opposite. Down here in the flesh, I’m getting old. Physically limited. Absurdly cautious. Incurably lazy. But up there on canvas, I’m full of life, ready to lift off for another flight over the treetops. The leaves around me rustle. The sky is sunlit, the breeze ruffles my beautiful feathers, and I am master of my domain.


I was born and grew up in Corpus Christi, Texas, and attended high school in Dallas. I can’t remember any time of my life when I wasn’t drawing or painting. It’s something I picked up as a child, perhaps because my mother painted when I was young.

I began oil painting in college, and I had excellent instruction in figure drawing and painting at Columbia University, studying with Ray Ciarrochi and John Heliker. While working for the federal government in Washington, D.C., I enrolled in watercolor classes at the Corcoran Museum School and, later, began an M.F.A. program at George Washington University. Showing a remarkable lack of foresight, I left Washington before finishing that degree, but most of the painting techniques I use today were learned there.

In 1983, I moved back to Dallas and began a 20-year career in software support and education. In 2003 I had my first solo exhibit in the Student Union gallery at the University of North Texas. The following October, I retired from the software mines and began to paint more or less full-time.

My first venture into competition was in 2002, when I entered a piece into the Kiamichi Owa Chito Art Show in Oklahoma. I was astonished not only to win a second place prize but also to sell the painting. The following year I won two first prizes at the same show. Buoyed by this success, I joined the Texas Visual Arts Association (TVAA) and began entering pieces into their shows. In May 2004, I was awarded third prize in the TVAA Annual Membership Exhibit.  In 2005, I won a third prize in the Navarro Council of the Arts Twenty-Second Annual National Juried Art Exhibition.  In 2006, my work was exhibited at the Farmers Branch Public Library, the Irving Art Association  (IAA) East Gallery (solo show), the Richardson Civic Art Society Juried Exhibit, the Navarro Council for the Arts (solo show), and the TVAA Membership Show in Dallas.

In recent years, I have won first prizes in the 2007 IAA Texas and Neighbors Five State Art Competition and in the 2008 IAA Wildlife Exhibit.  My work has won  “Best of Show” awards at the 2008 National Juried Art Show in Corsicana and at the 2010 TVAA Membership Show.  In 2011, I won the Best of Show Purchase Award at the Richardson Civic Art Exhibit. In May 2012, I took the top prize at the McKinney Performing Arts Center “Unique by Nature” juried competition.

I am represented by the Norwood Flynn Gallery in Dallas. My work was featured there in August 2010 in an exhibit entitled “Birdsong” and again in August 2012 in a collection entitled “Feathers.”

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