This cool painting of the Downtown Skyline by Vanessa Lacy was commissioned by the law firm of Dempsey, Kingsland & Osteen. It’s for their reception area, which will soon be receiving new furniture. We feel Vanessa knocked it out of the park. So does the client. Thanks again to everyone at DKO. The next two paintings will be finished soon.
We love taking on commissioned works and have managed roughly 1000 of them since 1991. Some were traditional monuments for the US Capitol Building, others were contemporary paintings for H&R Block, others were conceptual sculptures for Arrowhead Stadium.
Whether we’re working with brilliant artists like William Lobdell, Gary Bowling or MJ Rigby, a commissioned work is always a journey of discovery for each client. In fact we make sure of it. You always want a sense of play and spontaneity to drive each commission while still basing each on a timeless design. Picasso understood the importance of that. So did Alexander Calder.
Not all commissioned works have gone well over the centuries. Rembrandt was sued several times for disappointing certain clients, as was Vermeer. We never let that occur. How? Oh it’s a professional secret.
For Lyman Whitaker Wind Sculptures, the massive exhibit we did for the Dallas Arboretum based on how we laid out 140 Wind Sculptures, varying from 5’H to 32’H. Leopold arranged the pieces in groups according to a layout that Lyman devised. It was a huge hit, and attracted over 1 million visitors. The sculpture designs already existed; it was simply a matter of how Lyman chose to employ them.
Regarding our huge installations in blown glass, each of them is preceded by a specific design. Glass samples are blown first for the client to approve, then the glass artist is turned loose to work his or her magic. We work primarily with Tyler Kimball, and handle the logistics of engineering and installation while he follows his passion and instincts in the glass.
Commissioning works of art can be a series of disasters or success stories, depending on how it’s managed. We prefer the latter and always work hard to achieve it. In fact we’ve never had a client reject one of our finished works—although that is no slam against Vermeer. He just didn’t have anybody repping him.