John Tatschl

Born Vienna, Austria, June 30, 1906. Studied, Austrian State College (1925-1929); Austrian School of Design (1929-1932); Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna (1932-1936). Taught, Park College, Parkville, Missouri, 1943-1946.

Group exhibitions since 1938 including Dubuque University; Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe; Colorado State College; Fort Lewis College, Durango, Colorado; El Paso Museum of Art; Roswell Museum and Art Center, New Mexico.

Received Research Grants, UNM, 1950, 1953; AIA Award for Art in Architecture, 1963; Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts, University of Albuquerque, 1969.

Represented in public and private collections including Museum of New Mexico; mural, United States Post Office, Vivian, Louisiana; Roswell Museum and Art Center; Zimmerman Library, UNM; stained glass works in numerous churches and buildings.

The following is from John Tatschl's Honorary Degree ceremony:

A distinctive feature of Man is his innate artistic and creative nature. That men preserve the wisdom and art forms of the past while reaching out for new knowledge and modes of expression is the basis of cumulative civilization. In the opinion of the Faculty of the University of Albuquerque, Professor John Tatschl, engraver, lithographer, sculptor, artist in stained glass, and teacher represents the best qualities of the preserving and questing artist-scholar.

A native of Austria, John Tatschl holds diplomas from the Academy of Applied arts, the Academy of Fine Arts, and the Master School of Sculpture in Vienna. An eclectic traveler, he has visited most of the countries of the world to absorb the teachings of their culture. An authority on Greek, Hebrew and Taraskan art, he has shared his insights into the artistic heritage of the world with a generation of students in New Mexico.

Professor Tatschl joined the Art Department of Park College, Missouri in 1943. Since 1946 he has been professor of Art at the University of New Mexico and during these years he has been extremely productive. His works in many media can be found in public and private collections throughout the United States. In 1963, he was the recipient of the A.I.A. Award for Art in Architecture. His creations are represented in the permanent collections of the Museum of NEw Mexico and the Roswell Museum and his sculpture depicting the mission of the Franciscan brothers and sisters in New Mexico graces the entrance to our University Center.

During the 1950's, supported by a research grant, John Tatschl embarked upon a personal odyssey to discover the techniques of medieval stained-glass artistry. "I was strongly influenced by the stained-glass of the Middle Ages," he wrote. "At that time the art was purest. Color, as well as design, was used in its strongest, simplest form. The stream of religious art still ran very clean. It was my intention to bring this art form to New Mexico."

Shortly after his return to Albuquerque, Professor Tatschl was commissioned to execute a series of ten windows for the Episcopal Church of St. Michael and All Angels. Focusing on the life of Jesus the windows highlight the life of Christ from His Birth to His crucifixion. They reflect the artist's deep understanding of the Christian faith and culture and utilize, in the most effective manner, the intense sunlight of the American Southwest-a technical problem not encountered by the stained-glass artist of Northern Europe. Today these windows are an acknowledged part of the art heritage of New Mexico.

In the years since 1953, John Tatschl has created windows for the University of New Mexico, The Library at Canyon, Texas, the American Bank of Commerce in Albuquerque, as well as churches in Las Cruces and Los Alamos. his most recent major work is a sculptured wall painting four stories high in Zimmerman Library, depicting Mankind's rise to literacy over the past six thousand years. More than fifty systems of writing are represented.

We stand in awe of Professor Tatschl's rare accomplishments and pause this day to do him honor by conferring upon him the Degree of Doctor of Fine Arts, Honoris Causa.

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