Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Art of the American West. Frederick Remington. A-Z Challenge

        Aiding a Comrade. 1890 Frederic Remington (1861-1909)

Dover Publications. Mineola, New York. Paintings of the American West

Born in upstate New York, Frederick Remington came from wealth. His father was in the newspaper business and hoped his only son would go to college even though his early interests were hunting, fishing and hiking. In 1878 Remington enrolled at Yale's School of Fine Arts. His father died while Frederick was only a year and a half into his studies, so he left school and tried ranching in Montana. after several business ventures, a sheep ranch, hardware store, and saloon, and not enjoying the hard life in the West, he moved back to the East coast, with his wife who had been his childhood sweetheart, Eva Caten, and studied briefly at the Art Students' League.


He spent a great deal of time traveling to Arizona, Texas and New Mexico and became an illustrator for Harper's Magazine and Century Magazine. He also write articles creating a kind of mythical cowboy and took artistic liberties with the stories and illustrations. 

During the 1890's he began to learn and master the art of sculpting, using the lost wax process. He also specialized in painting cowboys, and the military.

He was one of the first American Artists to illustrate the true gait of the horse, with the galloping horse his signature subject, copied by many he said, "the galloping horse must be incorrectly drawn from the photographic standpoint to achieve the desired affect." He used photography to help him illustrate his paintings for which he was criticized.

In great demand as an illustrator.  He produced more than 3,000 drawings and paintings, twenty two bronze sculptures, a novel, a Broadway play, and over one hundred articles and stories.  John Ford's film, "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon" was inspired by Remington's work and the cigarette ad using the Marlboro Man was one of Remington's illustrations.

He gave Americans what they wanted to see in themselves, bravery, independence and optimism. He died in 1909 at the age of 48 following an emergency appendectomy. 

14 comments:

  1. I have a Remington print on my wall, of a Native American lodge.

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  2. Hi Nat .. he did die early didn't he .. but he was obviously very talented and how interesting to read the film was inspired by his work, while the cigarette ad - is just amazing .. eponymous almost .. and good to read about the horse's gait .. cheers Hilary

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  3. His biography is very long. Hard to put into a few paragraphs. But he accomplished so much. And his horse renderings are perfect.








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  4. I taught art a long time at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. They maintain a nice collection of Remington's very lively work downstairs in the museum. I love the photo of his work that you showed. The shadows are fabulous!

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    1. What a wonderful experience that must have been. If I am ever in Chicago... that would be on my list. Horses have to be the most difficult subjects to paint or sketch. I had three more Remingtons in the book, perhaps I'll show them after the challenge or for X as in "the paintings you have not seen."

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  5. I love this picture and until I saw the title, I wasn't sure if they had pushed him from the horse. Apparently not. Hey, he didn't got to Europe to study - and he had the money to do so.

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  6. I think they are trying to flee the Indians. Interesting that he did not go to Europe as most of them did. But he drew and drew and painted and painted, and got better.

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  7. Hi Natasha. This picture has a kind of unfinished look about it and I have actually heard of this painter!
    But what really intrigues me about this post is.....did he actually take his wife and his childhood sweetheart with him? Or did he, disappointingly take his 'wife and childhood sweetheart' with him?
    CLICK HERE for Bazza’s fabulous Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

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    1. I laughed when I read your comment. I need an editor when it is late at night. Should read "he took his childhood sweetheart, who became his wife with him." Still does not sound right. The painting does look unfinished, perhaps because it is done in light tones?

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  8. Interesting post! I like your theme, and even today, artists are criticized for using photographs to draw or paint, though it's very common now.

    Maui Jungalow

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    1. If it is your own photograph, it is your art.

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  9. Wow, he was not old when he died, but sounds like he was extremely prolific. Great sense of movement in this painting.

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    1. To paint horses like that, the painting is not static, it moves.

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