I am officially fascinated (right on the arm, said Groucho Marx). I've always wondered about folks who paint hotel-room art, and this morning I've discovered one -- who lives right here and whose work is about to grace at least one suite in the new Ritz-Carlton, which is set to open a week from today. Her name is Robin Ann Walker, and on her blog this morning she writes about getting added to the Ritz inventory -- "in the company of modern art heavyweights like Frank Stella," she writes, and, well, who knew? "The Ritz had a nice budget for artwork," Walker says, "and if the design firm had been local I would have had a better chance to get more paintings in there, but as it is, I feel lucky."
On her Web site, Walker provides a lengthy list of venues in which her works hang -- and they range from hotels (among them, the Magnolia and Hyatt Regency downtown) to corporate offices (Kinkos and Southwestern Bell and many others) to restaurants (a Champps in Lansing, Illinois). She's also shown around the world; last year she had two exhibitions at the Bath House Cultural Center and another in Budapest. "I moved to Dallas in 1989 from Bangkok, Thailand, where I was an American living abroad for 2 years," she writes. "I owned and ran a factory producing beveled glass panels. I had never lived in Dallas before, but my international plane ticket ended here, and I had a friend to stay with for awhile, so I just stayed." Isn't that how most people wind up here? --Robert Wilonsky
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.