2018 Briscoe Museum

This years' Night of Artists show at the Briscoe Museum was filled with high energy and excitement.  It featured a number of new events including the first ever Briscoe Collector's Summit as well as an Exhibition Preview, Artist Awards Dinner & Live Auction on Friday night.  I was honored to be invited to serve this year on the Collector's Summit panel along with iconic Western artist, Martin Grelle.   Other panelists included, Tylee Abbott, Associate Vice President and Specialist in American Art at Christie's and Amy Scott, Chief Curator at the Autry Museum of the American West.  The summit was moderated by Joshua Rose, Editor of American Art Collector and Western Art Collector Magazine.  For me, the highlight of the show was Friday night when I was incredibly humbled and honored to received the 2018 William B. Travis Award for Patrons' Choice. 

  I was incredibly honored to receive the William B. Travis Award for Patrons' Choice at the 2018 Night of Artists, The Briscoe Western Art Museum, San Antonio, TX.

I was incredibly honored to receive the William B. Travis Award for Patrons' Choice at the 2018 Night of Artists, The Briscoe Western Art Museum, San Antonio, TX.

Here’s The Background Story On My Painting, The Texians:

With the excitement of San Antonio’s 300th Anniversary approaching I wanted to create a work depicting the seminal event in the city’s history. The Alamo stands proudly as one of the most influential events in American history.  The words, “Remember the Alamo” are known throughout the world as a symbol of bravery and freedom. People from all walks of life connect to this powerful event so it seemed an appropriate subject matter for the 2018 Night of Artists. 

The Battle of the Alamo was one of the critical events in the Texas Revolution. The siege of the Alamo began on February 23th, 1836 with a small group of Texian defenders within the Alamo Mission complex and plaza at San Antonio de Bexar. The 13-day siege gave the primary Texian army under the command of Sam Houston crucial time to prepare for Santa Anna’s vast military force near 2,000 men. A number of messengers were sent to James W. Fannin, the commander of the group of Texian soldiers at Presidio La Bahia in Goliad, requesting reinforcements.  Although Fannin felt reinforcing the Alamo too risky it is thought that some 50 of his men left his command to go to the Alamo.  This painting depicts Travis giving orders to Crockett on the night of March 3rd as he prepares to leave on his quest for Fannin’s men.  Crockett located this small group of Fannin’s men waiting along Cibolo Creek just before midnight on March 3, 1836.  As Wikipedia states: “Alamo survivor Susannah Dickinson said in 1876 that Travis sent out three men shortly after dark on March 3, probably a response to the arrival of Mexican reinforcements. The three men—including Crockett—were sent to find Fannin. Lindley states that Crockett and one of the other men found the force of Texians waiting along Cibolo Creek just before midnight; they had advanced to within 20 miles (32 km) of the Alamo. Just before daylight on March 4, part of the Texian force managed to break through the Mexican lines and enter the Alamo. A second group was driven across the prairie by Mexican cavalry.”  The Battle of the Alamo would take place only a few days later on March 6, 1836.  

It is said that 185 - 260 Texian defenders gave their lives at the Battle of the Alamo.  James W. Fannin surrendered to Mexican forces a few weeks later at the Battle of Coleto Creek on March 27, 1836.  Fannin and nearly all of his 344 men were executed at Goliad, Texas under orders from Santa Anna.  Due to the brave siege by the defenders of the Alamo Texian forces under Sam Houston were given the crucial time needed in preparation for war. They soon defeated Santa Anna’s army and gained Texas independence.

  I'm standing with The William B. Travis Award for Patrons' Choice in front of my award winning work, The Texians, Oil, 30 x 40.

I'm standing with The William B. Travis Award for Patrons' Choice in front of my award winning work, The Texians, Oil, 30 x 40.

  Here I am with my lovely wife, Maria, standing in front of the Briscoe Museum.  The banner in the background features my historical work, The Texians.   Yes, we had a blast!

Here I am with my lovely wife, Maria, standing in front of the Briscoe Museum.  The banner in the background features my historical work, The Texians.   Yes, we had a blast!

  I'm standing with iconic Western artist, Martin Grelle and Joshua Rose, Editor of American Art Collector and Western Art Collector Magazine after the 2018 Briscoe Collector's Summit.

I'm standing with iconic Western artist, Martin Grelle and Joshua Rose, Editor of American Art Collector and Western Art Collector Magazine after the 2018 Briscoe Collector's Summit.

2018 Autry Museum

Each year the Autry Museum of the American West hosts one of the finest Western art shows in the nation… The Masters of the American West.  This invitational event highlights cutting-edge work by the 70 top Western artists in the business.  This is my 20th year at the Masters and it featured one of my most complex historical works, Stampede at Castle Gap, Oil, 40 x 60.  

  This was my major work for the 2018 Masters of the American West in Los Angeles.  Courtesy Western Art Collector Magazine.

This was my major work for the 2018 Masters of the American West in Los Angeles.  Courtesy Western Art Collector Magazine.

Here’s the background story on my painting, Stampede at Castle Gap:

Much of the history of the American West centers on and around the life of the cowboy. As early as the 1830’s large cattle ranches were springing up along the rivers and rich grassland in what was soon to become the Texas Republic. As the Civil War drew to a close the eastern market for beef began drying up.  John Chisum had already begun marketing beef to military outposts in the West by delivering a small herd to Fort Stanton, NM in 1864. Goodnight and Loving also began looking for new markets in 1865 and were attracted to the western military outposts and reservations.  However raiding Comanches were making a straight route to New Mexico nearly impossible.  Goodnight suggested a plan to take a southern route through Texas and hookup to the old Butterfield Stage Route to deliver a herd of cattle to the Bosque Redondo Indian reservation near Ft. Sumner, NM.  They would cross the Pecos River at Horse Head Crossing, a well-known Comanchero ford, and then take the cattle herd north along the Pecos entering New Mexico just south of modern day Carlsbad, NM.  After crossing the Concho River on the fifth day what stood before them was some 80 miles of dry desert wasteland. In the hot merciless sun the cattle could only last three days without water and by the second night the cattle were so restless they determined to drive them straight through to the Pecos.  About 2 am in the early hours of the third day the cattle picked up the sent of water as they passed through Castle Gap, about 12 miles from the Pecos River.  Knowing they could never hold them Chisum, Goodnight and Loving let the wild-eyed herd run the final twelve miles and watched them dive headlong into the swollen river.

“Their ribs stood out like the bars of a grill, their flanks were drawn and gaunt, their tongues lolled far from their mouths, sometimes sweeping in the alkali dust, and their eyes sunk in their sockets with approaching death.  Often a wild-eyed animal stopped, turned, and attempted to fight… About two o’clock in the morning they came to Castle Canon, from which a gentle, damp breeze was blowing.  Thinking they smelled water, the cattle stampeded down it.  Goodnight, riding wildly in the darkness ahead, succeeded in holding the leaders until the rest of herd came up… down to the river, twelve miles away…  This was the third day the cattle had had no water and they became crazed and almost unmanageable… they became wild for water… ‘I was in the lead and as soon as they all cleared the river, I turned them back… they crossed in such volume and force that they impeded the current, and the water was halfway up the bank in a perfect flood.’”  

The Lonesome Dove series by Larry McMurtry is loosely based on the historical account of this cattle drive.  Charles Goodnight Cowman And Plainsman, by J. Evetts Haley.  

  This is the first page of a recent article on the 2018 Masters of the American West in Los Angeles.  You can read the entire article in Western Art Collector Magazine, January, 2018.   A great big thank you to WAC magazine for featuring my work!

This is the first page of a recent article on the 2018 Masters of the American West in Los Angeles.  You can read the entire article in Western Art Collector Magazine, January, 2018.   A great big thank you to WAC magazine for featuring my work!

  Here's another pic featuring my work, Stampede at Castle Gap, Oil, 40 x 60,  from the Autry Museum's website.  This is my 20th year at the Masters of the American West show.  The 2018 show featured 70 of the top Western artists in the nation.  The additional works of art on this page are by two other artists participating in the show.  If you are in the Los Angeles area and have a chance to visit the Autry Museum of the American West it is well worth the time.  Courtesy the Autry Museum of the American West. 

Here's another pic featuring my work, Stampede at Castle Gap, Oil, 40 x 60,  from the Autry Museum's website.  This is my 20th year at the Masters of the American West show.  The 2018 show featured 70 of the top Western artists in the nation.  The additional works of art on this page are by two other artists participating in the show.  If you are in the Los Angeles area and have a chance to visit the Autry Museum of the American West it is well worth the time.  Courtesy the Autry Museum of the American West.