Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Mystery of Salle Werner-Vaughn

Several days ago, I wrote a post about lawn art in which I mentioned the houses on Blossom Street owned by Salle Werner-Vaughn. The only information I could find about the woman (I kept calling her "he" in the previous post) was that she had been some kind of arts educator and author (her books that I can find references to are A Little One's Draw a Story Drawing Book , The Illusion of 2, and Seeds of Snow--the latter two apparently are artist's books). I did find an intriguing reference to her in a Houston Press story:
Salle Werner Vaughn, an installation artist, has bought several small houses in the neighborhood, all of which have been carefully restored to their original state. A few years ago, Vaughn turned the inside of two Victorian homes into actual exhibits, including one that interpreted the Greek myth of the seasons, which revolves around the kidnapping of Zeus's daughter Persephone. ("Ain't That a Ditch", Brian Wallstin, The Houston Press, December 12, 2006)
Then yesterday, I stumbled across this book:
Doors cover

This was a show of Houston art that was put together in 1979. The theme of "doors" is rather contrived, but it does provide a snapshot of Houston art 30 years ago. Of the 54 artists, I recognized seven names--Mel Chin, Manual (Suzanne Bloom and Ed Hill), Gael Stack, Earl Staley, James Surls ... and Salle Werner-Vaughn. Here is her piece from the show:

Salle Werner-Vaughn door
Salle Werner-Vaughn, The Invisible Door, 1979

So I wonder if she was the sculptor of the two platonic solids in the yard on Blossom St.


  1. Interesting. I wonder if that's the same Salle Werner that taught art to my brother and me in Dallas way back in the early 70's. She lived and worked in an old church which is where we had our lessons.

    Back then, she did a lot of pen & ink and pencil drawings.

    My parents bought a few of her pieces, although I don't know where those pieces are now. The stuff always looked like scribbles to me but I was young back then...

  2. It sounds plausible that they could have been the same person. I mean, how many art teachers names Salle have their been in Texas?