Quest for the West
Quest for the West celebrates its 13th annual show with $1 million in sales at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis.
They say the number 13 is unlucky, but you wouldn’t have noticed at the 13th annual Quest for the West exhibition at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art in Indianapolis. The annual show and sale, which kicked off September 7 and 8, ended its opening weekend with $1 million in sales.
“I think it’s the most beautiful exhibition we’ve mounted in the 13 years of the Quest. Every one of the shows is special, but this year the works were as good as they could be. I think that’s what makes the show so wonderful—that consistent quality that we see year after year,” says Eiteljorg Museum president and CEO John Vanausdall. “We’re thrilled to hear that the artists enjoy the show. We have incredible hospitality, wonderful food, and the staff, including many volunteers, are here to respect the art and the artists. And what our patrons do is just incomparable.”
Like last year’s show, this year’s Quest once again featured a popular panel that allowed artists to discuss the importance of works from the permanent collection. Sculptors Curt Mattson and Greg Kelsey kicked off the event by talking about bronzes from George Carlson and Charles M. Russell. Kelsey immediately broke the ice by explaining to the audience that “sculptures are what you back into while you’re trying to look at the paintings.” Other panelists were P.A. Nisbet, who spoke about a landscape by Albert Bierstadt, and John Fawcett and Heide Presse dove into a work by Henry Farny.
The top award winner at this year’s show was Krystii Melaine, who won the Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award for her Native American portrait Within Life’s Circle, which will now be part of the museum’s collection. Melaine also won the patron’s choice award. Scott Rogers won the Cyrus Dallin Award for Best Sculpture, Josh Elliott won the Victor Higgins Award of Distinction for his body of submitted work, Mark Kelso won the artists’ choice award, and Glenn Dean won the Henry Farny Award for Best Painting. H. David Wright was honored with the Artist of Distinction Award, which means he will receive a solo exhibition at the 2019 Quest for the West.
Krystii Melaine, Within Life’s Circle, oil on linen, 36 x 18"