Today's West! Contemporary Art from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West

October 24, 2013 through April 13, 2014 – Temporary Exhibition Gallery

General Custer in Blue and Green - Biss©Earl Biss, General Custer in Blue and Green, 1996, oil on canvas, 40 x 30”, Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Charles B. Israel of Aspen, Colorado, 18.00

Tumbleweeds - Aspevig

©Clyde Aspevig, Tumbleweeds, 1999, oil on canvas, 40 x 60”, Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Gift of the Mary A.H. Rumsey Foundation, 16.99

American Indian Gothic - Bradley©David P. Bradley, American Indian Gothic, 1983, color lithograph on paper, 30 x 23”, Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Gift of Mrs. Damaris D.W. Ethridge, 1.84.5

Drawn from the unparalleled collection of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming, Booth Western Art Museum is proud to open a new exhibition, Today’s West! Contemporary Art from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Today’s West! will be on exhibit at Booth Museum October 24, 2013 through April 13, 2014 in the Special Exhibition Gallery.

Today’s West! will immerse visitors in the artistic developments that have occurred in Western art over the past 50 years. The exhibition features over 60 contemporary masterworks in a variety of media that both parallels and supplements the Booth Museum collection, showcasing additional examples by artists in the Booth collection along with work by artists never before exhibited at Booth. The exhibition layout echoes three themes represented in the Booth permanent collection galleries: Habitats and Inhabitants, Colliding Cultures, and Faces of the West.

Highlights from the exhibition:

 - Representation of artists tied to the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) including Fritz Scholder, T.C. Cannon, Allan Houser, Earl Biss, David Bradley, and Kevin Red Star.

 - Features the art of members from the Cowboy Artists of America (CAA) including Joe Beeler, T. D. Kelsey, Robert Lougheed, James Reynolds, and Robert Scriver.

 - The work of important living women artists included in this exhibition are Donna Howell-Sickles, Kathy Wipfler, Juane Quick-to-See Smith, Anne Coe, Linda Raynolds, and Carrie Ballantyne.

 - Artists who use abstract forms, infuse social commentary, appropriate from earlier artists or pop culture, practice photo realism, and those who experiment with new materials can all have their work considered Western art, although some might reject the Western art label as passé or limiting.  Among those pushing the envelope of the genre are Tom Palmore, Paul Pletka, Thom Ross, Bill Schenck, and Theodore Waddell.

The American West is a unique place; yet it also exists for many as an ideal, fantasy, myth, symbol or a time past. Our collective thoughts about the West, the real place with real history, or the West we construct from our minds, still provide powerful stimuli for new generations of artists. Those willing to confront the enduring traditions are empowered to pick and choose those they wish to align with or reject. While traditional Western art, commonly representational and narrative in nature, may long remain the mainstream of the genre, artists impacted by modern and post-modern trends in American art have created a significant and growing tributary. Their output provides a constructive framework for us to contemplate the American West anew: it’s turbulent past, vibrant present and uncertain future.

Concurrently with Today’s West! at Booth Museum, the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia will present Go West! Art of the American Frontier from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West from November 3, 2013 through April 13, 2014. Go West! will feature major works of art and important artifacts including paintings, drawings, sculpture, photographs, “cowboy” firearms and objects from Native American cultures that showcase the exploration and settlement of the American West, complimenting the exhibition at Booth.

The Go West! and Today’s West! exhibits will be accompanied by a 160-page, illustrated catalogue published by the High in association with the Yale University Press.  The catalogue features essays by Stephanie Heydt of the High Museum and Mindy A. Besaw and Emma Hansen of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Also featured will be a section on Todays West! with text by Booth Western Art Museum Executive Director Seth Hopkins. The catalogue will be available for purchase at Booth Western Art Museum, the High, as well as through Yale University Press.

For more information about Today’s West! Contemporary Art from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, call 770-387-1300.

For more information on Go West! Art of the American Frontier from the Buffalo Bill Center of the West at the HIGH Museum in Atlanta, click here.

For more information about the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, visit www.bbhc.org.

Made possible in part by:

Candace Alexander McNair_clearThe Ron and Lisa Brill Charitable Trust_clear1 GPB_media partner clear