The Annual Move


Otis Dozier ( American, 1904 - 1987 )

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General Description

Otis Dozier portrays the plight of individuals displaced by the Dust Bowl, but juxtaposes their despair with the hopeful solidity of the family unit. This stark depiction of the rural area of Garland, Texas, shows a family preparing their meager belongings for departure. One senses the reassuring survival of tradition and continuity in such an uprooting; the family heirlooms clustered in the foreground, the newborn baby in its mother's arms. Dozier seems to suggest that the only expendable element is the house itself, now empty. The people and the land endure.

Drawn from

  • Sam Ratcliffe, John Lunsford, and Joseph B. Rucker, DMA unpublished material [audio file: "Otis Dozier, The Annual Move," The Lone Star Regionalist: The Legacy of Jerry Bywaters], 2003.

  • Stewart, Rick. Lone Star Regionalism: The Dallas Nine and Their Circle 1928-1945. Austin: Texas Monthly Publishing, 1985, p. 63.

Fun Facts

  • Otis Dozier identified so strongly with the theme of this work that he and his wife served as the models for the couple in the painting.

  • The car, a 1918 Model A Ford, was borrowed from Dallas artist Perry Nichols.

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