The Jonson Gallery presents a
select group of watercolors and oils painted by Raymond Jonson between 1942,
after the dissolution of the Transcendental Painting Group, and 1948, when he conceived
the idea of the Jonson Gallery on the UNM campus.
Thus the 1940s span and
connect two significant events in Jonson's life by a series of works that are more
than a singular resolve to continue the group.
Rather, the Transcendental ideals of order and harmony conveyed through
intense color, rhythm, and harmonious relationships, Jonson believed, could
have a profound effect in the world, particularly a world then engaged in war. As Jonson wrote,
Right now we need works done that present a
high state of order. They will not be
seen by many but that does not matter for the act of doing releases that power,
that sincerity and feeling that must have [their] effect. I realize this places a new aspect and
function on the creative arts. I intend
With the war's end in 1945,
Jonson only increased his efforts by gathering the positive energy of his
painting into one place. The Jonson Gallery
was, of course, to be the resting place of the artist's substantial
legacy. But even more, it was to be the
locus of his intentions, the culmination and vital symbol of the artist's intentions.