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By: Lance McFarlin & Amber Ward

The Real MikeTabor By: Lance McFarlin & Amber Ward M ike Tabor is one of the

M ike Tabor is one of the southwest’s most respected

expressionist painters. Tabor was raised in Fort Worth, Texas. He is a third-generation rancher who began drawing and sketching at an early age.

Upon his graduation from college, Tabor kept his western roots by working around central Texas on various ranches, and now maintains a family ranch- ing operation in central Texas.

Tabor has worked with clients and corporations from coast to coast, and has been spotlighted in numerous print publications. “Southwest Art” took notice of Tabor’s talent and featured him both as its 2005 artis to watch and in a 2006 issue dedicated to cowgirls. While his figures re-

main sensual, his work has been called “Post Modern Western.” Tabor has embraced several different mediums throughout his career featuring paintings, sculptures and assemblages. What begins as concerns for light, mood, and color theory becaomes intense emotional interpretation in the hands of this master.

What all mediums do you work with and why? I am

primarily an acrylic painter but,

I also sculpt and build assem-

blages. I like acrylics because I like to work fast. The sculpting is very time consuming for me.

I haven’t found myself with it

yet. Assemblages go back to my love for design. Infinite possibil- ities and materials.

Influenced by the pop art movement of the 1960s and the French Impressionists, Tabor credits his modernistic ap- proach to a continuing drive to take western themes in a new direction.

What are some of your inspi- rations? People wise, I like the pop artists of the ‘60s. Inspira- tionally I like Design Principals and playing with space. How long have you been work- ing in your craft as an artist? I started in the ‘80s drawing for

Beef Cattle publications and my career has grown out of that. In 1974, Tabor began his formal training at Tarleton State Uni- versity in Stephenville, Texas.

Did you receive formal train- ing and if so where? I am a Tarleton State graduate. Mark Davis had a large impact on my life. I’ve also worked with a va- riety of other Artist from New York to California, and I think that I’ve gotten something from everyone I’ve worked with.

What have been some of your major exhibits of the years? There have been numerous gallery shows but probably the first major exhibit was “Horse Ballet,” which showed in teh mid ‘90s.

People have commented and compared you to Andy Warhol. Do you think this is a good comparison? What do you think about the comparison? Well, there’s no doubt he was a big influence on me. That was during my formative years so naturally I was influenced by his work but, as with any artist you grow and change and your direction changes constantly.

While his figures remain sen- sual, his work has been called “Postmodern Western.”

Every artist has a different way of describing their own artwork. How would you describe yours? There are a few artists out there who feel the same way as I do as to the direction of their work. The label was coined by an artist named Brad Browne and he says it’s Post Modern Western Art. I would say that I’m more of an expressionistic artist.

Tabor will be in Washington D.C. in July. The date of his next scheduled show has not been stet, but should either be in the spring or late fall. Also, his awards will be given at John Han- cock’s Annual Sales meeting. To see Tabor’s art, go to or call 817-578-1235 and make an appointment to go to the studio, located at 5534 N. Hwy 144 Granbury, TX 76048.

the studio, located at 5534 N. Hwy 144 Granbury, TX 76048. Above- Hanging On An Angel,
the studio, located at 5534 N. Hwy 144 Granbury, TX 76048. Above- Hanging On An Angel,

Above- Hanging On An Angel, Left- Special Delivery paintings by Mike Tabor