“The painter, the true painter, will be he who can wring from contemporary life its epic aspect and make us see and understand, with color or in drawing, how great and poetic we are in our cravats and our polished boots.” -- Charles Baudelaire
The Old West, once a vast unknown that stretched from the great plains of northern America to the deserts of the southwest, became a romanticized sub genre of landscape and history painting in American art. This remarkable blending of cultures—not only Hispanic and Native American, but numerous European groups and some east Asian immigrants—created a fascinating, but deadly, world of fabled gunslingers, vaqueros, Comanche chiefs, and adventurers. Some nineteenth and early twentieth century painters of the American West include George Catlin, James Otto Lewis, Frederic Remington, Charles Marion Russell, and George Winter.
“When a man or woman came West, their past became an unknown and the present became an open book. They soon became known by their actions or lack of. No one cared who your father was or what you had done. The only things that mattered were, that you were honest, had courage, and that you did your job.” — Louis L’Amour