Donald Roller Wilson

"Heads of Art" Whimsical Abstract Contemporary Lithograph of Dogs in Dresses 1984





Whimsical abstract artist proof lithograph by Texas based artist Donald Roller Wilson. The work features a pair of bulldogs dresses in pink dresses with rainbow hats set against an abstract gray wall with text that reads "heads of art." Along the top margin the text reads: “And here are Helen and Helen- Arkansas Siamese girl bulldog twins joined primarily at their heads (once) but now joined again in the room of Mrs. Lamar Jenkins who never made it out of her house in her whole life. Mrs. Jenkins and the girls would get together and the girls would tell her jokes and stuff.” Signed and dated in front lower right corner. The central lower margin reads "Happy Birthday Judee <3 84 Roller." Currently hung in a light gray frame with a cream matting.

Artist Biography

Donald Roller Wilson (born November 23, 1938) is an American artist. He is known for using items in his paintings, such as dogs and cats, chimpanzees, dill pickles, wooden matches, olives, asparagus stalks, and even cigarettes. He paints in oils in very polished realism using the same techniques of the old masters. He was born in Houston, Texas and educated at Wichita State University. He taught at the University of Arkansas from 1967 - 1974 and lives in Fayetteville, Arkansas, with his wife Kathleen, also an artist. According to the New York Times, "Donald Roller Wilson's goofy, hallucinogenic, old master-style painting of monkeys, dogs and cats dressed up in antique costumes may be kitsch, but it's high-quality kitsch, like good beach reading." Some of the characters he has created include Cookie the Baby Orangutan, Jane the Pug Girl, Jack the Jack Russell “Terror,” Loretta the Actress Cat, Miss Dog America, and Patricia the Seeing Eye Dog of Houston. Wilson's works can be seen in the Brooklyn Museum; Chicago Art Institute; Whitney Museum; Bank of America in San Francisco, California; Coe Kerr Gallery, New York City; and Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, as well as many other galleries. The majority of his work is in the hands of private collectors. He created album cover art for musician Frank Zappa during the 1980s and 1990s. Among these: Boulez Conducts Zappa: The Perfect Stranger (1984), Francesco Zappa (1984) and Them Or Us (1984). His main gallery at present is the John Berggruen Gallery in San Francisco, and his paintings may be collected through Peter Sahlman in New York.

Dimensions With Frame

H 28.25 in. x W 35.88 in. x D 1.13 in.

Dimensions Without Frame

H 22.38 in. x W 30 in.