85R28992 BK-D
  By: Frullo H.R. No. 2131
         WHEREAS, The Texas Commission on the Arts has announced the
  2017 appointments for the positions of State Poet Laureate,
  State  Musician, State Two-Dimensional Artist, and State
  Three-Dimensional Artist; and
         WHEREAS, The state's highest accolade for excellence in the
  arts, designation as a Texas State Artist is conferred on those
  individuals who represent the best of our rich and diverse artistic
  community and who inspire others through their unique creative
  expression; the nomination process for the awards is overseen by
  the TCA, and the final selections are made by a committee whose
  members are appointed by the governor, the lieutenant governor, and
  the speaker of the house of representatives; and
         WHEREAS, The 2017 State Poet Laureate is San Antonio native
  Jenny Browne; the author of three collections, At Once, The Second
  Reason, and Dear Stranger, she uses poetry to explore language,
  landscape, and the complexities of being human; she is also an
  educator who has worked as a poet-in-residence at schools,
  libraries, and community centers throughout the state; this
  celebrated writer has received fellowships from the National
  Endowment for the Arts, the Artist Foundation of San Antonio, and
  the Writers' League of Texas, in addition to the Cecil Hemley Award
  from the Poetry Society of America; after earning her MFA from the
  Michener Center for Writers at The University of Texas, she joined
  the English department at Trinity University; and
         WHEREAS, Known as the "King of Country Music," legendary
  singer-songwriter George Strait was selected as the 2017 State
  Musician; the only act in history to have a Top 10 hit every year for
  over three decades, he has released a staggering 60 No. 1 singles,
  and he claims 33 platinum and multiplatinum albums, the most of any
  country music artist ever; to date, he has earned more than 60 major
  entertainment industry awards, and he was honored with induction
  into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2006; his final performance
  in Arlington on his 2014 The Cowboy Rides Away Tour drew a
  record-shattering attendance of more than 100,000 fans, and he went
  on to perform six sold-out shows in 2016 as part of his Las Vegas
  concert series; and
         WHEREAS, The 2017 State Two-Dimensional Artist is Kermit
  Oliver, a Refugio native who has earned international recognition
  as one of the finest artists of our time; replete with biblical
  symbolism and references to Greek and Roman mythology, his
  masterfully executed paintings and drawings have been exhibited at
  the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and
  Culture as well as at the Nave Museum in Victoria and the Martin
  Museum of Art at Baylor University; a graduate of Texas Southern
  University, he was presented with the first ever Lifetime
  Achievement Award from Art League Houston in 2013, and the Museum of
  Fine Arts, Houston, exhibited a major retrospective of his work in
  2005; moreover, he holds the distinction of being the first
  American artist to create scarf designs for the iconic French
  fashion house of Hermès; and
         WHEREAS, Beverly Penn, the 2017 State Three-Dimensional
  Artist, creates delicate and captivating cast-bronze sculptures
  from weeds that she gathers in the Texas Hill Country, and these
  pieces invoke humanity's impulse to control the natural world
  through art and science; her work appears in collections at the
  Cooper Hewitt Museum in New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art,
  and other institutions across the country, and she has been
  commissioned for several public art projects; a tenured professor
  in the School of Art and Design at Texas State University, Ms. Penn
  is the recipient of nine faculty research grants as well as numerous
  fellowships, among them a Fulbright Fellowship in Barcelona, Spain;
         WHEREAS, The artists who have been selected to hold these
  prestigious posts have all greatly contributed to the vibrant
  cultural life of the Lone Star State, and Texas is indeed fortunate
  to be home to these talented individuals; now, therefore, be it
         RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 85th Texas
  Legislature hereby congratulate the 2017 State Artists and extend
  to them sincere best wishes for continued fulfillment in their
  creative endeavors.