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ABOUT the ARTIST

"For me, art has always been something of a means of travel… a way to go places and see things. I guess I have a bit of a wanderer in me..  an artistic vagabond. I still enjoy few things more than scenery that changes by the minute. As a child we never traveled far or very often. But through my art, I could sail the high seas, slay a few fire-breathing dragons, fly jet planes and rocket ships or have assorted shoot-outs with desperados and invading armies…all on a sheet of paper.

At age 17, a paralyzing injury resullted in life-long disability which made real life travels difficult at best. Despite having to re-learn to move my arm in order to draw, I soon found I could still go anywhere I liked by jumping into one of my magic windows. One day I might wander down a country road toward a forgotten bridge or country store. The next I may be exploring a classic Victorian house or looking up an imaginary castle. Art has always been my passport… my “all access pass” to discovery.

The places I visit are sometimes real… other times imaginary.  Regardless, I invite you to join me on my artistic journeys. Like me, I hope you’ll feel you’ve been there before!"

--- Randy Souders


Randy Souders is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington and has been a full-time artist since 1978. As owner of SOUDERS FINE ART, Inc.,  he’s published over 100 editions which are collected by thousands of people worldwide. For over 30 years, Randy’s created artworks for both individual collectors and corporations including:

Collaborations

· Walt Disney Company  Since 1990, the Disney company has commissioned Randy to create fine art paintings featuring their world famous landmarks and characters.  Disney reproduces his paintings as limited edition prints and other collectible merchandise which they feature throughout their theme parks, resorts, and galleries. His paintings have been   transformed into limited edition prints, posters, greeting cards, clocks, watchs, Limoges (fine china) dinnerware, and a host of other collectible items. He also the only artist asked to create the limited edition poster for the “Official Disneyana Convention” an annual gathering of 2,000 Disney enthusiasts from around the world. Collector demand at this event is so great that the accounting firm of Price-Waterhouse conducts a lottery to award rights to purchase his posters which are traditionally an instant  sell-out.

· Kraft/ General Foods Randy created two paintings which were featured on over 3 million Maxwell House ‘collectible’ coffee cans. Each featured a special label and color insert offering a coffee mug with the same painting. Proceeds benefited Very Special Arts. A congressional reception was hosted in the LBJ room at the US Capitol building.

· State Farm Insurance  Randy created a series of paintings featuring nostalgic scenes of America’s heartland. One, entitled “Main Street Memories,” was chosen for their annual ‘agency sales’ program. Approximately 10,000 framed prints were awarded to agents who achieved performance goals set for the year.

· MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in partnership with Turner Entertainment Randy has recently begun a new joint venture to create entertainment themed works- some based on imagery from the classic MGM movie library. His first assignment was to create a definitive view of the “Emerald City” from the Wizard of OZ which has been reproduced in a limited edition of 300 lithographs. He was most flattered to have his painting approved by Roger S. Baum, the great grandson of OZ creator, Frank L. Baum.


Philanthropy & Community Service

· Very Special Arts  Randy serves on the national board of directors of VSA Arts (formerly Very Special Arts- an affiliate of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC). He helps oversee their organizations across America and in over 90 countries worldwide. Randy's fellow board members include a "who's who" of America (including Senator Bob Dole, members of the Kennedy family, Tom Brokaw and John Hockenberry of NBC, Academy Award winning actress Marlee Matlin, violinist Itzhak Perlman, Jim McCann of 1-800-Flowers and many others).

Randy has been featured in two nationally televised program entitled "FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION (I & II)" which were hosted by academy award winning actress Marsha Mason and Faith Daniels of NBC.

·Chronicles of Courage Randy was profiled in the book Chronicles of Courage which was co-written by George Plimpton and Jean Kennedy Smith (former US Ambassador to Ireland, founder of Very Special Arts, and sister to President John F. Kennedy). A full page excerpt from his story was reprinted in PARADE Magazine (which enjoys a weekly readership in excess of 80 million nationwide!). >Click here to read<

· "An American Collection" Randy was commissioned to create a painting commemorating the 200th anniversary of Washington as the United States Capitol. This painting is still touring the world as part of an exhibition entitled "An American Collection" To date, it has been exhibited at the Royal Museum in Tokyo, the Hanoke Museum in Japan, the Royal Museum in Brussels, as well as in New York, San Francisco, Alabama, Connecticut and many other museums and venues.

· Art in Embassies Program Since 1992, Randy has been honored to be invited to participate in the US State Department’s “Art in Embassies” program. One of his paintings is on exhibition in the US Embassy in Dublin, Ireland. Letters of thanks were received from President Clinton, Vice President Gore, and Secretary of State Warren Christopher.

· Yamagata Fellows Institute Randy has been a 5 time juror of the prestigious international Yamagata Fellows Institute for visual arts (a collaboration with the Corcoran Museum in Washington, DC). Each year the three person jury selects candidates from around the world to come to the United States.

· International VSA Festival Randy was a representative of the United States delegation to the 1991International Very Special Arts Festival in Taipei, Taiwan (Republic of China). In addition to exhibiting his artwork, he was a featured speaker and trainer to several hundred delegates in attendance.

· Call to Rise   Randy was a founding member of the “Call to Rise” exhibition sponsored by Humana Corporation and Very Special Arts. The jury included the participation of J. Carter Brown (former head of the National Gallery of Art) and Frank Stella (Internationally known contemporary artist). Mr. Souders was honored to have a painting included in this prestigious exhibition.

· Nestle´ “Very Best in Youth” Program  Randy served the arts juror for the Nestle´ Corporation’s “Very Best in Youth” program. This national program was established by Nestle´ to award scholarships and grants to individuals and groups who achieve excellence in arts, athletics, and community service. Randy attended the official ceremonies at the US Capitol as the guest of Nestle´. His fellow advisory board members also included Olympic gold medalists' Bruce Jenner and Bart Connor.

· National Medal of Arts  In 1997,  Randy was nominated for the prestigious “National Medal of  Arts” award (established by Congress in 1984) for his work in advocating arts programming for persons with disabilities. This award is given by the President of the United States to individuals who, in his judgment, “... are deserving of special recognition by reason of their outstanding contributions to the excellence, growth, support, and availability of the arts in the United States...”   Though he did not win, the honor of being nominated was a huge delight.


News and Interviews  Randy has been featured in American Artist, Southwest Art, Art West, Art Business News, Collector's Mart, Collector Editions, Collector's Showcase, Decor Magazine, Prints Magazine, Southern Living, Texas Monthly, Texas Homes, Disney Magazine, Parade Magazine,  Beam, USA TODAY, Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Star Telegram, and many other state, local, and national publications. Randy has also been featured several times on CNN and in national publications like USA TODAY.

Commissions & Collections  Randy’s works are to be found in the collections of the The Walt Disney Company, MGM Grand, State Farm Insurance, Maxwell House, Maytag Corporation, Norman Rockwell Museum (Philadelphia), Humana Corporation, Texaco, Texas Instruments, Southwestern Bell, Coca-Cola, Frito Lay, Harris Medical Systems, Continental Medical Systems, Dallas Rehabilitation Center, Cooks/ Fort Worth Children’s Medical Center, Texas Historic Foundation, Bank One, Justin Industries, Shield Medical, Sheraton Hotels, and many more.

Exhibitions The White House, US Capitol, John F. Kennedy Center (Washington, DC), Texas State Capitol, Texas State Fair (3 million visitors), Orlando Museum of Art, Very Special Arts Gallery (Washington, DC), International VSA Festival- Taipei, Taiwan; University of Hawaii, University of Texas, Disneyana Conventions (Florida & California), -- plus over 300 gallery events, public exhibitions, and one-man shows.

Click to access Randy's Wikipedia® page

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