img 7963WNMU hosts a retrospective of Cecil Howard's 68-year art career at McCray Callery 090723

Photos and article by Mary Alice Murphy

[Editor's Note: A slideshow of his work on exhibit is below the Read More.]

Cecil Howard, who served as an art professor at Western New Mexico University, told the Beat that when he was in high school, no art courses were offered. "But one of my teachers liked art and knew I was interested in it. She helped me get a piece of stone from a quarry. Her husband was a gravestone carver, and he loaned some of his tools to me." One of the photos shows the first carving he made.


WNMU Hosts Cecil Howard Retrospective of his 68-year art career to date 090723


One of Howard's first works - a window


Cecil Howard self-portrait 1961


Howard self-portrait 1991


Howard's first sculpture done in high school


Untitled - 2023


Some of the visitors to the show


Welded Steel - "Black Sulphur" - 1968


Dreaming in the Uffizzi 2001


Sun Grown and Sweet White Onions 2018


Visitors in another portion of the gallery


Italy influenced 1991 Staza della Segnatura, third part of a tryptych, which won the Governor's Award and is on exhibit at the Governor's Gallery in Santa Fe


Visitors in the McCray Gallery looking at Howard's paintings and sculptures


Robin and Alex Oheltree talk with Marilyn Howard, Cecil's wife


Mike Lane and Cecil Howard chat


Cecil's family, from left, his daughter-in-law Alice and son Japeth, Marilyn, Cecil and their daughter Ana


Juniper and copper "Eagle" from the Sudie Kennedy collection


Cecil, retired art professor and former Expressive Arts Department chair, with current department chair Michael Metcalf


Silver City artist Jean-Robert Beffort talks to Cecil


Faye McCalmont, who got the retrospective in process before she retired, and Cecil

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Because of the vast variety of media used in his art work, the Beat asked Howard if there were any medium he had never used.

"I never did any print-making professionally, only in college," Howard replied. "I also did not teach jewelry, photography or print-making. I taught almost everything else, including art appreciation."

His wife, Marilyn, said she tried to get him interested in print-making, but he didn't want to do it. "So, I did it instead. I liked doing it."

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