Rustic Bird (Courtney Hale Revia) (scroll down for Mark Nesmith)
Southeast Texas born and raised artist who finds balance between work and play. Her debut album, “Simple Things”, was released November 2015 and her most recent work, “Tattered”, was released November 2018.
Her third album “Growing Pains” is due to be released digitally June 3, 2022, with a physical release at her venue 7 Oaks on March 4, 2022. It is a true representation of her growth as a songwriter and woman, containing songs that touch on topics ranging from suicide/grief to rainbows and hope. The “Growing Pains” album is a culmination of her life as a mother, teacher, wife, daughter and now a music promoter. The title track of her third album was a song that due to time and money didn’t make her 2018 album and it has since unintentionally became the self derived theme of her current work. The album was tracked and finalized during 2020 and 2021, the same year she lost her father to COVID. The last song on the album pays tribute to her dads songwriting influences and completes the legacy of “blooming where you are” that has been a subliminal message in Courtney’s life since the song was written by her father, James T Hale, back in 1989. Courtney didn’t realize this song was indeed her fathers until she found it in his book of songs, August of 2021, just two weeks after his passing. In reflection of the completed album, Courtney finds the theme of “blooming where you are” to be mentioned in multiple songs including, “Rainbows at Night” and “One Way Out” giving power to the overall spirit that has come to be known as her album, “Growing Pains”.
Courtney is unapologetically a confessional songwriter. As the daughter of a songwriter, she has experienced first hand the importance of story telling and putting both experience and truth to music. She sees her purpose in entertaining, educating and inspiring. Her music is an eclectic mix of country, alt rock, Americana, spiritual and folk. Twenty-five years of being a mom, teacher, wife, daughter and friend have lended itself to influencing her work.
Courtney was inspired by her first ever listening room experience when she opened for Bob Schneider at Courville’s of Beaumont Texas in 2016. She opened for Cindy Cashdollar and Johnny Nicholas in January of 2020 at Courvilles and Kevin Galloway of Uncle Lucious January of 2020 at the Old Quarter and November of 2021 at Courville’s.
She started hosting house concerts in 2018 and has transformed that into an actual venue on their property. A listening room known as, 7 Oaks Event Garden LLC. She has hosted performers like Redd Volkaert, Brian Pounds, Susan Gibson, Robert Cline Jr., her father, James T. Hale, Mean Mary, Dean Dillon and this fall 2022, Bob Schneider.
Watching her father write and play music all his life, being a singer songwriter herself in an area of Texas that needs more venues for original artist has been her inspiration in advocating for the art and the artist.
In January of 2022, Courtney has rebranded her acoustic sound under the name of Rustic Bird. A name inspired by the passing of her father, James T Hale in July of 2021. The acoustic sound pays tribute to her bluegrass, folk and blues roots. Her motto is “When roots run deep, the only way out is to bloom where you are.”
Mark Nesmith (more info on music side of Mark at bottom)
About the Artist
“If Andy Warhol and Bob Ross had an inanimate love child, it would be a Mark Nesmith painting.”
– Rachel Williams, the Dallas Observer
“Impressionistic. Textured. Layered. Mark Nesmith’s oil paintings have the drama of all three, with one last surprising element: a wonderful stillness derived from his choice in subject matter.”
– Cassie Rief, Empty Easel
“…expertly crafted work that walks the line between traditional and contemporary.”
– Caitlin Greenwood, The Austin Chronicle
“…paintings with the boldness of a drawing with good line work and the scintillating quality of impressionistic paint application.” – Blake Bertrand, Off Ramp Magazine
Mark Nesmith’s art is a testimony to the resilience of the creative spirit. Throughout his career he has explored a multitude of themes, from the bayous, beaches, and woods he roamed as a child in Southeast Texas to whimsical critters addressing the superficiality of modern society and the artist’s unease with mankind’s relationship to nature. Underlying his work is a deep love for vibrant color and thick, textured surfaces. From diminutive paintings to large, expansive canvases, his expressive artworks combine observation, memory, and imagination.
Most recently the right-handed artist battled through back and shoulder surgeries affecting his dominant hand. Always moving forward, the artist started using the brush with his left hand creating abstract gridded images not unlike Chuck Close and Paul Klee before him. Here color and light rise to the forefront in tapestry like forms that suggest images of the ocean or land.
Nesmith’s solo exhibition at the Longview Museum of Fine Art titled “Transformation in the Wild World of Mark Nesmith: A Retrospective” featured more than seventy paintings from all stages of the artist’s output. The show was on view at the LMFA from May 21st – September 25th, 2022. In October 2022, the long running syndicated television series Texas Country Reporter featured Mark in episode 8 of season 51.
Mark Nesmith earned his BFA in Studio Art from Lamar University in 1998. He has exhibited at the Longview Museum of Fine Art, the Art Museum of Southeast Texas, the Museum of East Texas, the Dishman Art Museum, the Texas Artists Museum, and the Mesquite Arts Center as well as commercial galleries across the country. Mark’s paintings have appeared in American Art Collector Magazine, Art Reveal Magazine, the Austin Chronicle, the Dallas Observer, Peripheral ARTeries, Professional Artist Magazine, Empty Easel, and more, and are in collections in thirty-two states throughout the US and overseas in Singapore. Notable collections include the Longview Museum of Fine Art, the Dishman Art Museum, Duke University, Grant Thornton LLP, Verabank, The Honorable Ron Clark, Chief Judge U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, and the Lone Survivor Foundation. Mark teaches middle school art and music in Port Neches, TX. A lifelong musician, he has performed throughout the South and Midwest. He has written about art for Ezine Articles and Empty Easel and authored the blog Paint Daily Texas. Mark is a member of the Artists of Texas and Contemporary Fine Artists International and currently serves as the President of the Texas Artists Museum in Port Arthur. Mark lives with his wife Elizabeth and their houseful of pups in Southeast Texas.
Selected Solo and Two-Person Exhibitions
2022 Transformation in the Wild World of Mark Nesmith: A Retrospective, Longview Museum of Fine Art, Longview, TX
2022 Texas Terrain (With Elizabeth Nesmith), Bisong Art Gallery, Houston, TX
2022 Spring Pop Up Gallery (With Elizabeth Nesmith), The Avenue (TASI), Port Neches, TX
2021 Recent Paintings, Blue Mule Winery, Fayetteville, TX
2021 Over and Beyond (With Calvin Carter), The Music Studio, Beaumont, TX
2021 Paintings by Mark Nesmith, JW’s Patio, Beaumont, TX
2020 As We See It (with Elizabeth Nesmith), Third Coast Gallery, Galveston, TX
2020 Still in Love and Paint (with Elizabeth Nesmith), The Art Studio Inc., Beaumont, TX
2020 Paintings by Mark Nesmith, JW’s Patio, Beaumont, TX
2020 Paintings by Mark & Elizabeth Nesmith, Swede & Lewis Texas Art, La Grange, TX
2019 Wild Things, Bisong Art Gallery, Houston, TX
2019 Mark Nesmith & Elizabeth Pearson, Third Coast Gallery, Galveston, TX
2018 Love & Paint (With Elizabeth Pearson), The Art Studio, Inc., Beaumont, TX
2018 The Art of Mark Nesmith, J. Wilson’s, Beaumont, TX
2017 Wild World, Mesquite Arts Center, Mesquite, TX
2017 Second Nature, Third Coast Gallery, Galveston, TX
2017 C.L.A.S.S., Finder’s Fayre Antiques, Beaumont, TX
2016 The Only Way Round is Through, Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, TX
2016 Featured Artist, Gallery by the Gulf, Crystal Beach, TX
2015 Recent Paintings, Texas Artists Museum, Port Arthur, TX
2015 Terra Chroma (with Denise Fulton), Davis Gallery & Framing, Austin, TX
2015 Chasing Light, Noble Swede Gallery, La Grange, TX
2014 Recent Paintings, Cork Grinders, Baytown, TX
2014 The Way Back Home, The Art Studio, Inc., Beaumont, TX
1998 Introspective (with Curt Cryer), The Art Studio, Inc., Beaumont, TX
1997 Southeast Texas Arts Council Exhibition, Beaumont Club, Beaumont, TX
Selected Group Exhibitions
2022 The Art of Flowers, The Music Studio/The Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, TX
2021 One Piece Show, The Music Studio, Beaumont, TX
2021 The Art of Flowers, The Music Studio/The Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, TX
2021 Compendium, The Dishman Art Museum, Beaumont, TX
2020 The Art of Flowers, The Music Studio, Beaumont, TX
2019 One Piece Show, The Music Studio, Beaumont, TX
2019 The Art of Flowers, The Music Studio/The Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, TX
2019 Exelsior!, H Gallery (curated by Dab Art), Ventura, CA
2018 The Great Outdoors with Ed Holder, Museum of the Gulf Coast, Port Arthur, TX
2018 Four Seasons Gallery, Birmingham, AL
2018 Proto Pop, H Gallery (curated by Dab Art), Ventura, CA
2018 The Art of Flowers, The Music Studio, Beaumont, TX
2018 TASIMJE, The Art Studio, Inc., Beaumont, TX
2018 Le Grand Bal, Dishman Art Museum, Beaumont, TX
2017 3D, Portrait, and Classical Nude Exhibition, Beaumont Art League, Beaumont, TX
2016 Seeking Surreal: The Dreams of the Artist, Davis Gallery, Austin, TX
2016 Treasure Auction: POP!, The Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, TX
2016 Neches River Festival Exhibition, Beaumont Art League, Beaumont, TX
2015 17th Annual Holiday Showcase, Davis Gallery & Framing, Austin, TX
2015 Galveston Art Walk, Third Coast Gallery, Galveston, TX
2015 There’s a Summer Place We Can Go, Davis Gallery & Framing, Austin, TX
2015 Le Grand Bal (showcase artist), Dishman Art Museum, Beaumont, TX
2014 Scenes of Southeast Texas, Reaud House, Beaumont, TX
2013 TASIMJE, The Art Studio Inc., Beaumont, TX
2011 Artists of Texas, Dutch Art Gallery, Dallas, TX
2007 DAEA Professional Show, Dallas, TX
2004 DAEA Professional Show, Dallas, TX
2000 Works on Paper, Union Gallery, Denton, TX
2000 The Red Dot, Union Gallery, Denton, TX
1999 Hooks-Epstein Gallery, Houston, TX
1999 Sundown Gallery, Guthrie, OK
1998 The Gathering, Dishman Art Museum, Beaumont, TX
1998 Le Grand Bal, Dishman Art Museum, Beaumont, TX
1998 Sundown Gallery, Guthrie, OK
1998 Milan Art Gallery, Fort Worth, TX
1998 Great American Nude Show, Art League of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, TX
1997 Paint the Town Red, Beaumont Country Club, Beaumont, TX
1997 The Open Show (Susie B. Kalil Juror), Art League of Houston, Houston, TX
1997 Horace Cardwell Competition, Museum of East Texas, Lufkin, TX
1997 Le Grand Bal, Dishman Art Gallery, Beaumont, TX
1997 TASIMJE, The Art Studio, Inc., Beaumont, TX
1996 Paint the Town Red, Beaumont Country Club, Beaumont, TX
1996 Tri-State Plus National Juried Competition, Beaumont Art League, Beaumont, TX
1996 Dishman National Fine Arts Competition, Dishman Art Museum, Beaumont, TX
BibliographySinger-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Mark Nesmith spent years fronting the successful Dallas based bands Hackberry Road and Lone Star Republic. His current band, Barstool Ministry, maintains a busy gig calendar throughout SE Texas. He logged hundreds of gigs and thousands of miles performing throughout Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Kansas. He’s played countless venues large and small, from restaurants and smoky dive bars to the Dallas House of Blues, the Levitt Pavilion in Arlington, the historic Stagecoach Ballroom in Fort Worth, and Remington Park Casino in Oklahoma City.
His originals are a melting pot of all the musical styles he’s played over the years, sort of a musical gumbo of acoustic folk rock and Americana with a soulful, bluesy vibe. His music has been heard on FNTX Radio, Cellblock Radio, KNON 89.3, the Fox 4 King of the Road Show, SETexas Live, and more. In between his own songs he likes to launch into an eclectic mix of covers, everything from Dave Mathews, Amos Lee, Ray LaMontagne, and Jack Johnson, to STP, U2, and Matchbox 20, even throwing in a bit of country and classic rock.
An artist as well as a musician, Mark graduated from Lamar University in 1998 with a B.F.A. in Studio Art. His paintings have been exhibited throughout Texas and Oklahoma and he is represented by Dab Art in Ventura, CA and exhibits with Davis Gallery in Austin, TX, Third Coast Gallery in Galveston, TX, and Bisong Gallery in Houston.