Travis, Olin Herman

Olin Herman Travis

 (AM. 1888-1975)

Born and reared in Dallas, Travis attended public schools there. In his youth he received instruction from R. Jerome Hill, Florence Rhine, Hans Krunz-Meyer, and Max Hagendorn. At the urging of Clyde Giltner Chandler, Travis enrolled in 1909 in the Art Institute of Chicago where he studied five consecutive years before becoming an associate instructor at the institute in 1914. His teachers included Kenyon Cox, Charles Francis Browne, Ralph Elmer Clarkson, Harry Mills Walcott, and Joaquin Sorollo y Bastida. Travis worked briefly thereafter as a commercial artist and as an instructor at the Chicago Commercial Art School. In 1924 Travis moved to Dallas with his wife, Kathryne Hail Travis, one of his former students whom he had married in 1916. In 1926, with James Wadden, the couple founded the Dallas Art Institute and later, in Cass, Arkansas, the Ozark Summer School of Painting, which they operated for three summers. Kathryne and Olin Travis were divorced in 1934. His second wife was Josephine Oliver. For many years Olin Travis was head of the Dallas Art Institute (1926 – 1941). He painted along the Texas coast on several trips around 1930, and in the summer of 1933 he traveled to West Texas in Frank Reaugh’s sketching caravan. Travis taught two years as a guest instructor at the San Antonio Art Institute (1944 – 1945), and a year at Austin College, Sherman (1951). He also taught several summers at the Texas Artists Camp at Christoval. A prolific painter, he recorded landscapes, Dallas scenes, and figures from the 1920s until his death in Dallas, The Dallas Public Library’s Technicolor film entitled Olin Travis: A Visit to His Studio shows the artist at work and many of his paintings. Source: Texas Painters, Sculptors & Graphic Artists by John and Deborah Powers