The Art of David Adickes

978-1-64843-230-9 Cloth
10 x 9 x 0 in
168 pp. 115 color photos, 10 b&w photos. Appendix. Bib. Index.
Pub Date: 02/17/2025
Prepublication - Pre-Order Now


  • Cloth $35.00

As the creator of the 67-foot-tall “Big Sam” statue of Sam Houston that overlooks Interstate 45 just south of Huntsville, Texas, David Adickes is a pivotal, if sometimes enigmatic, figure in Texas art. Though he made many contributions to the early development of the Houston art scene and to Texas Modernism, which has experienced an upsurge in interest of late, Adickes’s life and work have had no thorough examination.

Monumental: The Art of David Adickes tells the story of how a young artist from rural Texas studied with Fernand Léger in Paris, traveled the world, and returned to Texas to become one of the founders of a thriving art scene. Consideration of his monumental sculptures of Sam Houston, the Beatles, and various US presidents affords readers the opportunity to reflect on the challenges of making public art and navigating its political, cultural, and bureaucratic restrictions.

Monumental considers the artistic implications of history, popular culture, kitsch, and even social media while exploring the dichotomy between the frequent academic skepticism and the ongoing mass appeal of Adickes’s oeuvre. Scholars and students of contemporary Texas art, as well as general readers interested in Adickes’s well-known public works, will enjoy this first-ever comprehensive look at a popular Texas artist.

Sara and John Lindsey Series in the Arts and Humanities

Published by Texas A&M University Press