The cancellation of the 2021 Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo leaves a big hole in the winter schedule. We’ll miss this iconic Cowtown happening: the annual parade in downtown Fort Worth, the trailers full of livestock leaving bits of hay on the roadways as they travel through the Cultural District, the vivid neon of the carnival rides, the sugar-filled aroma of funnel cakes and cotton candy, the harsh weather that typically has everyone running to put on their long underwear at least once or twice. While it won’t take the place of the “Greatest Show on Dirt,” a new exhibit at Artspace111 celebrates rodeo culture through art. “The Rodeo Show” features artists Linda Blackburn, Donna Howell-Sickles, Rima Canaan Lee and Jo LeMay Rutledge.
Each of these women looks at the rodeo from a different perspective and translates what they see with a paintbrush or, in the case of Lee, a camera. Blackburn has lived in Fort Worth for decades, and her work is a contemporary but accessible spin on Western art. Howell-Sickles’ paintings capture the joy and spirit of cowgirls; she herself is a member of the Hall of Fame at the National Cowgirl Museum. Rutledge proves the devil is in the details with her realistic paintings of Western life. They make you want to pull out a magnifying glass to study them. And she also looks great in a cowboy hat. Lee was born in Lebanon and grew up in Germany. Now a Fort Worth resident, she’s drawn to the narrative of photography, be it the blur and motion of rodeo action or the stark landscape of the West. The Rodeo Show The exhibit runs Jan. 15 through March 20. Opening reception is noon to 8:30 p.m Jan. 16.
111 Hampton St., Fort Worth, 817-692-3228, artspace111.com