Autumn Twins by John Biggers
White marble sculpture entitled "By The Spring" by Allan Houser
Landscape painting by Dawson Dawson-Watson

The Permanent Collection of the Stark Galleries

The permanent collection of the J. Wayne Stark Galleries focuses on American paintings, prints, drawings, and photographs of the 19th and 20th centuries, with a strong emphasis on Texas art. Some artists represented include Julian Onderdonk, H.O. “Cowboy” Kelly, and Dorothy Hood. Additionally, the permanent collection is home to sculpture and various decorative arts, and provides educational programming to inform guests of all ages about art.

All prospective art donations or purchases undergo a rigorous selection process and must gain final approval from the President’s Advisory Committee on Art Policy before admittance into the permanent collection of the Stark Galleries. Criterion for acquisition include: clear ownership by prospective donor, aesthetic value of the art, historical significance, and whether the art stands to enhance the permanent collection.

A native Texan, J. Wayne Stark graduated from Texas A&M in 1939 before serving in World War II. In 1947, he returned to campus to begin work overseeing the construction of the Memorial Student Center. Stark served the university for 33 years before retiring in 1980, but his legacy has continued on campus and in the community. As the founding director of Texas A&M’s Memorial Student Center, Stark worked to provide students with a well-rounded education, fusing academics with civic awareness by bringing museum-quality art to campus. The assembly of the permanent collection began under the leadership and vision of Stark. It was his commitment to and belief in the arts that led university officials to name and dedicate the permanent collection in Stark’s honor in 1992. Stark desired to launch a comprehensive visual arts program at Texas A&M. In addition to helping establish the University Art Collection and the University Art Exhibitions Program, Stark was also instrumental in the creation of the Opera and Performing Arts Society (OPAS) and the MSC Visual Arts Committee.

For more about the permanent collection of the Stark Galleries, contact the director and curator, Catherine Hastedt, at or 979-845-8501.