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Caroline Henry Art Blog

Inspiration in the "Wild" West

by Caroline , August 21, 2010—10:08 PM

Topics: animals, artist life, inspiration, nature, shows

I brought home lots of art inspiration from my recent vacation, most of it in the form of wild country and wild animals in western Wyoming and northeaster Utah. In the midst of this great open country nestles Jackson Hole, where the small city of Jackson, Wyoming is one of the leading cities for sales of western art to the world__™s collectors. Best of all, it houses the National Museum of Wildlife Art, While most of our national museums are in the great cities of America, the structure and the setting could not be better for presenting wildlife art.

The museum, designed by Denver architect Curtis Fentress, fits smoothly into a landscape of rocky cliff formations and sagebrush covered hills backed by magnificent mountains. It__™s fa__ade is rough stone, and its lines echo both the ancient human habitations and the natural formations of the American west. It is a work of art in itself.

Permanent collections include such icons of western art as Charles Russell and Albert Bierstadt, and an extensive collection of works by Carl Rungius. The focus is wildlife with all of the works. We were pleased to be there for a showing of the drawings of Swiss artist Karl Bodmer, one of the first artists to produce an extensive body of work depicting North American wildlife.

For a more whimsical view of wildlife, a collection of Maurice Sendak__™s illustrations are also being shown until September 19.

Back to the museum itself__"its exterior is enhanced by wildlife sculptures and windows in the restaurant look across the road to the National Elk Refuge and the mountains that rise beyond.



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