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Wild horses

Artists combine love of horses, barns for art show

By Carol Rolf/Contributing Writer

This article was published April 3, 2014 at 12:00 a.m.


Marv Crummer and his wife, Jan, will have an art show at Carmen’s Antiques in Conway. Marv specializes in paintings of nature, and Jan concentrates on horses in her art.

She likes horses. He likes barns.

Combine the two for a glimpse of the art uniquely produced by Marv and Jan Crummer of Vilonia.

The Crummers will celebrate the arrival of spring and the Chinese New Year, the Year of the Horse, with an art show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Carmen’s Art and Antiques, 1022 Oak St. in Conway. They will have 30 to 40 oil paintings on display.

There is no admission charge for the art show, and refreshments will be offered.

Carmen Thompson, gallery owner, said the show will be extended to Sunday as part of the Downtown Partnership’s Spring Open House, which will be held in downtown businesses from 1-4 p.m.

The husband-and-wife artists have been painting in oils for more than 40 years. They work in a studio at their home.

Marv, 85, is well known for his seascapes and water themes but has added a new series to his portfolio — barns and buildings of Arkansas.

“I have photographed many of these old wooden barns and buildings,” Marv said. “Many of them are now gone. They are being replaced by metal buildings.”

Jan, 70, said her newest works are equine-related.

“They capture the flavor of the Year of the Horse,” she said.

The Crummers met in 1969 at an Orange County, Calif., sidewalk art exhibit and married in 1972. They moved to Arkansas in 1983 when Marv was transferred as an engineer with FMC (now John Deere). The couple bought property outside Vilonia in 1990, built a home and moved into it in 1991.

Between them, they have four children and seven grandchildren.

Marv said his interest in art began early when he tried his hand at cartooning. While in high school, he sold his first cartoon to a national magazine and was art editor of the school newspaper.

He studied art at Otis Art Institute and Chouinard Art Institute, both in Los Angeles. During that time, he worked as a freelance cartoonist and was a contributing artist to his hometown newspaper, the San Clemente Sun.

Over time, his interest in art changed from cartooning to painting landscapes and seascapes, frequently on-site. He said his favorite subject matter is water.

“I spent several years on southern-California beaches, including seven years as a lifeguard in San Clemente,” he said.

Marv’s paintings are found in many private collections throughout the United States. He has had numerous one-man shows and has won many awards, including Best in Show at the 2006 Conway League of Artists’ Tri-County Show.

He is a member of the Arkansas Artists Registry and a past president of the Conway League of Artists.

Jan is also from California. She studied art through the California State College System and with private instructors and at workshops.

Her artwork often includes people and animals, frequently in scenes depicting

the early part of the 20th century. She specializes in animal portraits, which are done as commissions for patrons throughout the country.

She has won many awards, including several Best of Show ribbons. Her work is part of the permanent collections of Regions Bank in Conway and Harding University in Searcy.

Jan is a member of the Arkansas Artists Registry and a past president of the Conway League of Artists.


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