Celebrating a century since the Victory Stampede, the Calgary Stampede brings 42 Western artists to this year’s art show.
In 1919, Charles M. Russell brought two dozen paintings to the Victory Stampede, the first Calgary Stampede to occur after the end of World War I. Russell was at his peak, and his presence was one of the highlights of the famous event.
A century later the Calgary Stampede is once again bringing Western artists at the top of their careers to Alberta, Canada. The show, Masterworks of the West,
is a one-night-only exhibition featuring the work of 42 diverse artists, including 23 painters and seven sculptors, each bringing three works that will be available for purchase. Adding another dimension to the Western works of art will be the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association, from which 12 current members will be showing exquisite bits and spurs, saddles, braided rawhide and works in silver. The invitationonly show will take place July 4 at the Palomino Room at the BMO Centre in Stampede Park.
“When it comes to Western art we haven’t had anyone like Charles M. Russell here in the last 100 years,” says Dana Peers, president of the Calgary Stampede.
“So for the anniversary of the
Victory Stampede, we thought we should bring in the best artists for this important anniversary.”
Peers, who worked closely with Claggett/rey Gallery owner Bill Rey on the list of invited artists, says the Stampede chose artists who had achieved success in the Western art world and who were creating unique work. “So far I’m very impressed with the work I’m
seeing. We have Martin Grelle, Tim Cox, Tom Browning and many others, so the work is all going to be very impressive,” Peers says, adding that the annual event usually has an art component, but this year’s event has been elevated. “We have lots of really great artists come here, but this year is very unique because we sought out artists who wouldn’t otherwise be here. These are some of the best artists out there in the West.”
Artists invited this year include William Acheff, Duke Beardsley, Shawn Cameron, Josh Elliott, Loren Entz, Deborah Copenhaver Fellows, Oreland Joe, T.D. Kelsey, Rich Loffler, William Matthews, John Moyers, Terri Kelly Moyers, Howard Post, Robert Pummill, Jim Rey, Tim Shinabarger, Gordon Snidow, Andy Thomas and Don Weller. TCAA members include Wilson Capron, Scott Hardy, Ernie Marsh, Cary Schwarz, John Willemsma and others.
The format of the show will be a first-come, first-served sale, which is how the Russell exhibition was held a century ago. “Bill encouraged us to think outside of the box,” Peers says. “So rather than a by-draw or
auction format, we’re doing this as a fixed-price sale that will allow everyone to purchase art once they get inside the gallery.”
Peers adds: “Bill has inspired us to have a vision with the show, and it’s been a lot of fun putting it all into motion. Not since Russell was here have we done something quite like this.”
For information on the event contact Wendy Olson by email at wol[email protected]garystampede.com.
Tom Browning, Bustin’ Loose, oil on canvas, 34 x 34”
T.D. Kelsey, Cream of Calgary, bronze, ed. 1 of 1, 29 x 16 x 18”
Oreland Joe, The Council Chief, Texas Limestone, 21½ x 19½ x 13”
Mike Capron, Travis and His Paint, oil on canvas, 33 x 31”