Buffalo Bill Center of the West Façade
Alfred Jacob Miller (1810 – 1874, United States). “Trappers Saluting the Wind River Mountains,” ca. 1864. Oil on canvas, 21 15/16 x 35 13/16 inches. Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Cody, Wyoming. Gift of The Coe Foundation. 10.70
Tony Foster (b. 1946, Lincolnshire, England). “From Lower Green River Lake Looking South South East to Squaretop,” 2022. Graphite and watercolour on paper, with glass bead necklace by Chastity Teton, map, 45 ½ x 58 ½ inches. Collection of The Foster Museum
Two exhibitions invite visitors to journey along the Green River with artist Tony Foster (b. 1946) and historical painter Alfred Jacob Miller (1810–1874).
CODY, WY, UNITED STATES, May 8, 2023/EINPresswire.com/ — The Center of the West and the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art debut the exhibition, “Alfred Jacob Miller: Revisiting the Rendezvous—in Scotland and Today,” in Cody, Wyoming. The exhibition opens May 20 and runs through October 22, 2023, traveling to the Eiteljorg in 2024.
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“Revisiting the Rendezvous” features more than 50 paintings by Miller, who attended the fur traders summer rendezvous of 1837 held in the Green River Valley in what is today Wyoming. Miller was among the earliest artists of European descent to venture into the heart of the Rocky Mountains, as invited by a wealthy Scottish adventurer, William Drummond Stewart.
Visitors will see paintings ranging from intimately scaled watercolors to large oil paintings measuring 8 feet wide. The show presents a unique opportunity to view a significant number of reunited “Murthly Castle Millers.” To celebrate the significance of regional holdings, “Revisiting the Rendezvous” draws solely from collections in and around Wyoming. The paintings were inspired by Miller’s 1837 journey, displayed in Stewart’s Scottish estate, and then dispersed throughout the world following Stewart’s death. His subjects were primarily Native peoples they met and with whom they traveled, interesting geological formations, landscapes, hunting scenes and animal encounters, and Stewart and his companions. Eight of the paintings are accompanied by historian/playwright Gregory Hinton’s recorded narration of Miller’s own descriptions of the works, accessible by QR codes.
The exhibition also includes artifacts related to the fur trade era in the American West, ranging from intricately beaded moccasins to well-used Green River knives, to an adorned saddle. Items created by Crow and Shoshone peoples offer counterpoints to Miller’s depictions of Native identities and assert other ways of storytelling.
Visitors can immerse themselves in two theatrical stage sets; one artistically evokes Stewart’s campsite at the 1837 rendezvous and the other, a fictitious room at his Scottish estate, allowing guests to imagine themselves stepping back in time. Another area invites visitors to try on a mountain man’s capote, sling a “possibles bag” across their chest, and take a picture against a reproduced Miller landscape backdrop.
“Revisiting the Rendezvous” is presented in the Anne & Charles Duncan Special Exhibition Gallery at the Center of the West and is sponsored by Marilyn B. Dunn, Margaret and William Frère, Karen and Grant Gregory Family, the Estate of Linda Miller, Linda Spencer Murchison and Reid Murchison, Marnie S. Pillsbury, Sage Creek Ranch, Maggie and Dick Scarlett, Naoma Tate and the Family of Hal Tate, Lisa and Bill Wirthlin, and the generous support of others. At the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, the exhibition is dedicated to Peter H. Hassrick and William “Bill” Dwight Weiss.
Lenders include Naoma Tate, J. Joe Ricketts in association with the Ricketts Art Foundation, the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson, and the American Heritage Center (AHC) at the University of Wyoming in Laramie.
Running concurrently with “Revisiting the Rendezvous” at the Center of the West is “Tony Foster: Watercolour Diaries from the Green River,” also in the Duncan Special Exhibition Gallery.
Coordinated in partnership with the artist and The Foster Museum in Palo Alto, California, the exhibition includes 16 paintings of locations on the Green River, whose source is in Wyoming. Most often discussed as the headwaters of the mighty Colorado River system, the Green—called the Seeds-kee-dee-Agie (Prairie Hen River) by Shoshone peoples—is deserving of focused celebration as a critical western waterway of great ecological and cultural significance.
For forty years, Tony Foster has created artworks in the world’s wildest places from the Arctic to the Tropics, and from Mount Everest to Death Valley. Foster’s “Journeys” often involve multiple expeditions and can take years to complete. Some like the Green River are specific to a particular place while others explore a conceptual idea at locations throughout the world. He often works at large scale and completes as much of his watercolors as possible in the field—in rugged, remote locations amid unpredictable weather conditions, gleaning as much as possible from direct observation and only finishing his works in his studio in Cornwall, England.
Foster made his Green River paintings between 2018 and 2023, inspired by several trips to the American West during that time. “Watercolour Diaries from the Green River,” is a continuation of the artist’s interest in physically and conceptually exploring waterways in the American West. His beautiful and highly detailed paintings also include handwritten notes and mounted “souvenirs” that take the form of small sketches, collected or purchased objects, or bits of maps, which relate to his personal experiences of the places and their histories. The artist pays tribute to the river’s geology by including Green River Formation fossils in some of the works. Near Foster’s artwork, numerous examples of these impeccably preserved fossils from the Eocene Epoch will be displayed. An accompanying catalogue, with contributions from distinguished essayists, will examine Foster’s work and the Green River from a variety of perspectives.
A short film directed by David Schendel will be on view within the gallery, bringing Foster’s passion and process to life, and presenting a collage of the artist’s experiences from his Green River Journey, shedding light on Foster’s method of painting en plein air with an ultralight setup that he has honed to one tiny paint box, one folding drawing board, a small plastic deli container lid as a mixing tray, and several brushes.
Foster’s hope is to inspire people to think about “the absolute exquisite complexity and interest” of the places he visits. Through his artwork, he offers us an opportunity to vicariously travel to locations to which most will never venture. For Foster, this Journey, as part of his life’s work, is “about looking at things in depth and thinking about them over a long period, and studying them, and trying to convey the sense of what it’s actually like to sit in a place… absorbing the place.”
Ken Straniere, PR/Marketing Manager
Buffalo Bill Center of the West
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Article originally published on www.einpresswire.com as Buffalo Bill Center of the West to Open Two Exhibitions United Across Subject and Time