The Ted Watts (1942-2015) Art Collection includes various art prints, primarily college sports, sports figures, and a few political figures. Nationally renowned, Watts was known for his sports themed paintings, especially portraits of athletes. He received a bachelor of fine arts degree from Pittsburg State University in 1966. He worked out of his art studio in Oswego, Kansas. He specialized in illustrations and drawings for college and university sports programs and departments. His artwork was printed on Pittsburg State University football program covers and three NCCA Basketball Championship program covers. He received numerous awards and lifetime achievements including Outstanding Alumni in 1976 and the Meritorious Achievement Award in 1988 from Pittsburg State University. Watts was inducted into the PSU Hall of Fame in 1999 and in 2013 was inducted into Northeastern Oklahoma A&M Hall of Fame. This digital exhibit serves as the 2020 Gene DeGruson Memorial Lecture, in honor of the original curator of the Special Collections & University Archives at Pittsburg State University. The lecture has been held every year since 1998, after Gene’s sudden passing in 1997. This will be the 23rd event in the series, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic is being held as a virtual presentation this year. There will also be an onsite exhibit of Ted Watts’ art in the Special Collections & University Archives in Axe Library beginning in late October 2020. Ted Watts and Eugene DeGruson were friends, and business partners, particularly in their Little Balkans Foundation, with published the periodical, The Little Balkans Review beginning in the early 1980s, and which ran through the 1980s with several issues that were published later in the 1990s and the 2000s.
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