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Art Review

An Artist's Perspective: Shirley Glickman


Back in the late '90s I would occasionally hang out with the great Wichita painter Shirley Glickman. She would invite me to run errands with her in her white Volvo station wagon. She would randomly call me and invite me over for Sunday brunch. 

I would walk into the courtyard of her home and marvel at rare steel and limestone totems, each made by her, and her wonderful art collection inside the home.

We would talk and debate about contemporary art, art history, and the local events of the day. She still lives, at 92, but the real Shirley is hidden by Alzheimer's disease. I miss her very much. Being older now, I realize that my friend Shirley is a pioneer in this city. She helped to open up the Wichita arts community to the truth that women are the most amazing artists in this city. And she created a body of work so powerful that it is still frequently discussed and often copied to this day.

A Glickman painting is so very hard to find and purchase. But recently a bit of her later work was discovered in her basement studio by her son, and he has generously offered it at a solo show given in her honor. Fittingly, the show will be featured at the very gallery of which she was a founding member back in 1977, Gallery XII, at 412 E. Douglas. I think it's one of the most exciting art events to take place in Wichita in years.

The show opens Friday, Feb. 23, and runs through March 27.