Sharon Markwardt  Color of the West: Original Art
About the Artist

 About the Artist-  Sharon Markwardt

Burleson, Texas  (Near Ft. Worth), and Santa Fe, NM

817-484-2454 or 817-994-7663 

Email Sharon or (latest copy here), like on facebook, or read my Art Blog

Commissions Accepted

Sharon Markwardt has a degree in Fine Art, and as the daughter of an artist, has always created things.  However, a major shift in her work occurred in 2006 when she began riding horses.  Alone and injured after a fall, she managed to climb back on, and it gave her a new sense of courage and boldness.  Sharon moved from watercolor to oils, her color perception altered, and the subject matter was suddenly colorful, Western and Equine. 

"I'm only half-joking when I say my horse threw me into western art!", Sharon says with a laugh. 

Since then, her career has blossomed. Tight cropping  encourages the viewer to focus on the areas that fascinate the artist, who allows the subject matter to determine the format of the painting.  Sharon's unusual color usage causes the same image to appear much more realistic when viewed from afar.  "My colors are intense, but they are not arbitrary--I paint the colors I actually see, though I have to look very closely.  I just pump them up so they are easier and more fun for everybody to see.  Perhaps I am an interpreter, as artists tend to be, translating Nature to Art.  Black-and-white makes great photography, but it's not a way I can live my life.  Few things are absolute, in art or life;  I'm a big believer in relativity.  Each color is warm or cool, light or dark, only relative to those around it.  EVERYTHING is relative."

Currently, the subjects Sharon enjoys exploring most are animals, especially those found on the ranch, and their relationships with each other and with us.  She believes they have personalities, and  seeks to expose that "soul".  It is often reflected in the expressive eyes, which convey a rainbow of emotions.  Animals share a closer connection with the living universe than do people with all their technology.  Studying animals and bringing them to life on a canvas allows her to tap into that creative spirit and energy.  She feels very fortunate to be able to see her neighbor's Texas longhorns from her studio, and to have horses, dogs, and a miniature donkey on her own property.  Her vet even introduced her to a nearby herd of bison, or buffalo, who also serve as subjects.  With the recent acquisition of a second studio/home in Santa Fe, a whole new adventure is starting!

Cowboy boots are another theme featured in Sharon's work.  Perhaps that is because she is a fourth generation Texan, but in addition to interesting form and often wild colors, they offer a symbolic message.  They are iconic of the American West and the pioneer spirit.  Sharon says, "To me, they represent boldness and self-sufficiency, an independence from the need for the approval of others.  The stark, minimalist backgrounds I favor refer to the unknowns and dangers that constitute life, through which we must boldly stride."

"I thirst to learn something new with each painting, and hunger to bring the colors to life. The intense joy of the painting process feeds my soul.  Others pick up on that, and comment that mine is "happy art".  Enough darkness and pain exist in the world, so I feel no need to create more.  I believe good art will have an emotional impact or resonance with the viewer.  I look for the beauty in each of my subjects, and strive to leave my collectors in an upbeat mood, ready to face the challenges of their day."--Sharon Markwardt



Brief Biography



Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honors,  University of Texas at Arlington, Biology minor

Painted with Soon Y. Warren, Tom Lynch, and others.  Taught children, adults, demos and workshops, in both oils and watercolors. Served as Juror.


Representation and Affiliations:

Currently represented by:

 Your Private Collection, Granbury,  TX  (link)

I have also previously sold work  at:
Waxlander Gallery and Sculpture Garden, Santa Fe, NM
Horton Fine Art, Beaver Creek, CO
The Turquoise Door, Telluride, CO
Vertical Peaks Fine Art, Jackson, WY

Prellop Fine Art Gallery, Salado, TX

Morton Street Gallery, Houston, TX

Saks Cherry Creek Galleries, Denver, CO

Hue Gallery, Mansfield , TX



Women Artists of the West (Master Signature) (link)

Oil Painters of America Associate member (link)

Society of Watercolor Artists (Signature) (link)

Texas Artists Coalition (link)

Russell Farm Art Center (link) , where she taught and served as President of this non-profit arts group.


Selected Exhibits and Awards 

"Western Art South of the Sweet Tea Line, V" at the Booth Museum of Western Art, GA, curated exhibit through Dec 2017
“Cowgirl Up!” National Invitational Show, Desert Caballeros Western MuseumWickenburgAZ Mar 24-June 5 2017
Invited back for 2018
Western Spirit Show at the Cheyenne Frontier Days Museum, WY, March 2017
Women Artists of the West Spring Showcase at RS Hanna Gallery in Fredericksburg, TX, March-June 2017

"Women Artists of the West" National show as Master Signature invited member, RS Hanna Gallery, Fredericksburg, TX.  Dec 2016

The Art Of Cutting, National Invitational Show, Ft Worth, TX Nov 2016

"Women Artists of the West" National Juried Show at the Tucson Desert Art Museum, AZ, Nov 2015

"An Artist's Christmas" Juried show, Nov 14, 2015 at the Ft Worth Zoo.

"The Art of Cutting" NCHA Invitational show, Nov 22-29, Ft Worth, TX

"Conversations in Color" 4-artist show at Waxlander Gallery, Santa Fe, August , 2015

“Cowgirl Up!” National Invitational Show,
Desert Caballeros Western Museum, Wickenburg, AZ, Mar-May

Navarro Arts Council award "A New Look at the West" show at the Pearce Museum, Corsicana, TX

“The Eyes Have It!” Two-woman show with Lori Faye Bock at   Waxlander Gallery,
Santa Fe, NM. Oct, 2013

2013                Tin Star Award (a top honor) “A New Look At The West” National show at the Pearce Museum, Corsicana, TX

2013                “Cowgirl Up!” National Invitational Show, Desert Caballeros Western  Museum, Wickenburg, AZ

2013                Waxlander's Featured Artist at “ArtFeast”, Santa Fe, NM

2012                Winter Gala Art Show, Ardmore, OK (Anne Morand Juror)

2012-2013      Historic Canyon Road Paintout

2012                Texas Artists Coalition Juried Show, Ft Worth, TX

2012                “Cowgirl Up!” National Invitational Show, Desert Caballeros Western Museum, Wickenburg, AZ

2011                “In Living Color” Solo Show at Waxlander Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2011                Juror’s Choice Award- “WAOWing The Lone Star State” National Show of Women Artists of the West, TX  

2011                Best in Show, Mid-Cities Fine Artists Open Show, TX

2011                Watercolor Art Society- Houston International Show

2011                 First Place Figures/Portraits, Trinity Arts Guild, TX

2010                "West of Arlington"  3-Artist exhibit , Arlington Museum of Art

2010                "Eclectic Visions: Through the Eyes of Texas Artists"  Arlington Museum of Art (Curated show)

2010                First Place, Works on Paper, Mid Cities Fine Artists 25th Juried  Show

2010                Meet the Artist Sharon Markwardt, Your Private Collection Gallery Granbury, TX

2010                "WAOWing the Golden State" National Juried show, Olaf Wieghorst Museum, El Cajon, CA (4 pieces accepted)

2010                WOW- "Women of Worth", National League of American Pen Women show, Atrium Gallery, UNTHSC Ft. Worth

2010                First Place, Watercolors, Trinity Arts Guild National Juried Show

2010                Juror's Merit Award, Society of Watercolor Artists International Juried Show

2010                Popular Choice award and Third place Oils, Trinity Arts Guild, TX

2010                Winsor & Newton Award, Arlington Visual Arts Assoc. Open Show

2010                “Who Paints the Truth” FW15 group show, Ft Worth Community Arts Center

2009                Second Place, Society of Watercolor Artists Juried Show

2009                “Boots 2 Heal” National show, Morton Street Gallery, Houston                                                          

2009                Bosque Conservatory Art Classic National show (Sold)

2009                First Place Sculpture, Weatherford Art Assn. Open Juried Show

2009                Solo Exhibition: “Color of The West”, Fort Worth Community Arts

2009                SWA Merit Award, Society of Watercolor Artists National Show

2009                "WAOWing the Mountain State", Women Artists of the West, National Show, Saks Galleries, Denver (sold)

2008                Best of Show, Winsor & Newton Award, Weatherford Art Assn. Show       

2007                One-painter show, Hue Gallery, Mansfield, TX

 The list goes back decades but gets a little long .  Her first Best of Show cash award came at age 14. 

"Back in the day", Sharon sold work in many major juried shows such as Ft. Worth Main St., Dallas 500 ArtFest,  and Cottonwood Arts Festival.


Markwardt's work hangs in corporate and private collections throughout the United States and beyond.   Collectors include doctors, lawyers, horsemen, financial planners, other artists, ranchers, and a Champion Bull Rider.  Her  paintings have been chosen as gifts to represent Texas by  Ft. Worth Sister Cities International, and  now hang in Italy, Africa, and Japan.  An interior design firm specializing in "enhancing well-being" chose her paintings for the walls of the El Paso Children's Hospital.

Southwest Art, May 2017, article pg 100, 107
Southwest Art, April 2017 pg

Southwest Art, March 2017 pg 7
Southwest Art, Feb 2107, pgs 33 & 101
Cowboys and Indians Feb/Mar 2017, pg 37
Fine Art Connoisseur, November, 2016
Southwest Art, November 2016, pgs 46 & 48
Southwest Art, March 2016
Southwest Art, November 2015
Western Art Collector, November, 2015
Cowboys and Indians, July, 2015

Southwest Art , March 2015

Western Art Collector, March 2015

Cowgirl Magazine, March 2015

Cover art for the book Orphan Moon by T.K.Lukas
Telluride Style winter/spring 2014-2015
2015 calendar for the New Mexico Equine Assistance league.

The Santa Fean, December 2014

Southwest Art, Sept 2014
Cowboys and Indians, Aug 2014
Southwest Art, March 2014, pg 34-36
Western Art Collector, March 2014, pg 172-178
Western Art Collector, September 2013 pg 80-81

Texas Monthly, September 2013, pg 187

Southwest Art, September 2013, pg 1, 38-39 (Show Preview)
Cowboys and Indians, Aug/Sept 2013, pg 58

Southwest Art, March 2013, pgs 32-35

Southwest Art, November, 2012

Texas Monthly, July 2012, pg 183
Southwest ArtMarch 2012, Article pg 62 and 78

Art of the West, 2012 Guidebook of Western Art

Western Art Collector, Oct 2011, pgs 23, 100-101(Show Preview)

Southwest Art, Oct 2011, pg 17

Santa Fean, Oct/Nov 2011, pg 47

Southwest Art, May 2011, pgs 37 & 39

Southwest Art, Jan 2011, pg 99, March pg 100

Art of the West 2011 Guidebook of Western Art

Southwest Art, Dec 2010, pg 109

Southwest Art, Oct 2010, Oil Painters of America pgs 46 and 49

Southwest Art, May 2010, ad with WAOW

Art of the West, May 2010, ad with WAOW

Article in Ft. Worth Star Telegram April 7, 2010

Southwest Art, Aug 2009, ad with WAOW

Prime Living, Oct 2009

Burleson Now, Oct 2007, Cover painting and article

Mansfield News Mirror, Oct, 2007, Photos and write-up



I have supported the following charities with donations of my artwork: 

Cariety Foundation (Women’s Cancer)

Wings of Hope (Equine Assisted Therapy)

MD Anderson’s Children’s Cancer Fund

Johnson County Children’s Advocacy
Preserve Historic Granbury
2 Texas Longhorn Breeders associations
ArtSmart : Art in the Santa Fe public schools
Chisholm Trail 100-First Responders in my home County


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