October 18, 2017
Museum of the Western Prairie in Altus to Host “Christmas Past” Exhibit and Program
ALTUS, Okla. — The Museum of the Western Prairie will present a new exhibit, “Christmas Past,” from November 1, 2017 through January 31, 2018. In conjunction with the exhibit, the museum will host a premiere program on Tuesday, November 7, 2017, at 7 p.m. The premiere program is free and open to the public.
“Christmas Past” is a collection of linocut prints by Derald Swineford, who was the head of the art department at University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (previously known as Oklahoma College for Women and Oklahoma College of Liberal Arts) from 1946 through 1977. Each holiday season, Swineford prepared one of these prints for friends, students and colleagues. The earliest, completed in 1940 and 1941, were done before he left to serve in World War II, and the rest were completed between 1946 and 1983. The pieces through 1960 draw mostly upon western themes, like rodeo events and square dances. After 1960, Swineford cleverly blends regionalist themes with Christmas iconography. For example, in one print he substitutes cowboy figures for the three wise men and, in another, American Indians. Swineford’s son, John Swineford of Chickasha, is loaning the pieces for the exhibition.
The premiere program will explore the technique of creating linocut prints as well as the evolution of Christmas iconography through the centuries. For more information about the program or the exhibit, please call 580-482-1044. This premiere program will be hosted by the Western Trail Historical Society.
The Museum of the Western Prairie is located at 1100 Memorial Drive in Altus, Okla., and is a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society. The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.