Artist of the West

The fine artists that bring color and perspective to life in the West


Artist of the West: New Directions: Shawna Moore

Summer 2013       Written By Michele Corriel      

THE SCENT OF HONEY, a blossom of paint, the heady buzz of heat. Stepping into Shawna Moore’s 1940s bungalow in Whitefish, Montana, the afternoon light slants across the studio. Here,…

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Artist of the West: Close Encounters

Arts 2015       By Mark Wilcox      

Nearly face-to-face with an anvil-headed Alaskan wolverine, Greg Beecham realized he might be on the dinner menu. The artist had just watched the creature sprint across the mossy muskeg toward…

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Artist of the West: River, Sky, Paint

Fly Fishing 2013       Written By Michele Corriel      

“IT'S A NICE, RICH, TRANSPARENT BROWN to tone the canvas,” he says. “I just want something there, something I can work from. Then I’ll block in the colors and refine…

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Artist of the West: Art from the Heart

Winter 2014       Written By Michele Corriel      

Eight colors plus one palette knife equal an infinite array of possibilities for Harry Koyama. By stripping down complicated elements he allows his subjects to reveal themselves in his paintings.…

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Artist of the West: The Bronze Wildlife of Tim Shinabarger

Winter 2016       Written By Michele Corriel      

Unbounded in bronze, free within the sharp-angled landscape, deepened by a flight-or-fight instinct, Tim Shinabarger’s sculptures never slip the knot of biology or the loose netting of time. Each piece…

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Artist of the West: Landscape Conversations: Jerolyn Dirks

Arts 2013       Written By Michele Corriel      

JEROLYN DIRKS' LANDSCAPES ARE NOT THE GRANDIOSE panoramas of peaks and clouds. Instead they are the intimate conversations we have with nature while walking in the woods. They are the whispers…

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Artist of the West: Natural Impressions

Summer 2014       Written By Michele Corriel      

“Art is an experience, not an object.”                    — Robert Motherwell WHEN SCULPTOR GEORGE BUMANN PULLS DOWN the dark shade in his small studio,…

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Artist of the West: Western Versatility

Summer 2016       Written By Michele Corriel      

Nancy Cawdrey dips her brush into a plate of deep-ocher dye. Holding it near the tapered end, not wanting her stroke to be too precious, she touches the tip to…

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Artist of the West: Share the Art

Winter 2011       Written By Michele Corriel      

DALE CHIHULY HAS NEVER BEEN TO Miles City, but his exquisite works made from glass have gotten there and beyond. Folks in Great Falls might never have seen Bob DeWeese’s retrospective…

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Artist of the West: Poetry and Prose in Clay

Arts 2009       Written By Sandi Blake      

RICHARD NOTKIN’S CERAMIC TEAPOTS AND TILES LINGER LIKE shell on the shores of our consciousness, markers of where we've been and how far we have to go. Compelling, haunting, his images…

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Artist of the West: Sweat and Steel

Winter 2010       Written By Michele Corriel      

In general it can be said that a nation’s art is greatest when it most reflects the character of its people. — Edward Hopper SUNLIGHT POURS IN THROUGH THE OLD Lincoln…

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Artist of the West: Ensnared in the Human Form

Arts 2010       Written By Michele Corriel      

MIDDLE OF THE ROOM, LIKE A BEACON, AWAITING THE NEXT STEP IN THE BRONZING PROCESS. This foray into forged materials is not new to sculptor Gabriel Kulka, but it is…

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Artist of the West: Creative Chaos

Summer 2015       Written By Michele Corriel      

Standing before his easel, Troy Collins eases dark gray paint along the edges of a 16-by-40-inch canvas. A plastic container sits on the floor filled with his paints, large tubes…

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Artist of the West: Ambassador of Art: Ray Campeau

Fly Fishing 2012       Written By Michele Corriel      

THE HOUSE, BUILT IN 1892, is drenched in apples. Cooking apples, baking apples, the aroma of brown sugar and cinnamon partner with the heat radiating from the heart of home —…

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Artist of the West: Poetry in Painting

Fly Fishing 2010       Written By Michele Corriel      

LIKE A STANZA OF SPONTANEOUS POETRY, each one of Dave Hall’s oil paintings embodies a singular encounter, an internal landscape inspired by the physical experience of the setting. An emotional…

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Artist of the West: Television West

Summer 2010       Written By Michele Corriel      

DELICIOUSLY STEEPED IN THE CINEMATIC, painter Gordon McConnell, is drawn to stop action movement, the blustery stillness of an instant, with a director-like passion to capture and free at the…

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Artist of the West: The Timeless Scenes of W. Steve Seltzer

Fall 2013       Written By Michele Corriel      

IT IS TRUE THAT W. STEVE SELTZER GAINED HIS REPUTATION as an artist with many of his Western scenes, yet he doesn’t consider himself a typical Western painter. Seltzer’s topics…

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Artist of the West: Painting the World with Wonder

Summer 2011       Written By Cathy Moser      

INSIDE A CENTURY-OLD BRICK FARMHOUSE near Rosebud, Mont., Mary Ann Cherry’s mother Winnie was always busy with handiwork. She crocheted rugs from her own designs and painted faces on the…

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Artist of the West: Water, Paint, and Paper

Fly Fishing 2017       Written By Michele Corriel      

“The gods do not deduct from man’s allotted span the hours spent in fishing.” — Babylonian Proverb For watercolorist Jeffrey Craven, the river isn’t just a place to paint, it’s…

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Artist of the West: Celebrating Nature

Summer 2012       Written By Michele Corriel      

MARY ROBERSON IS AN OBSERVER first and a painter second. “First I need to know my subject, not only know it, but love it,” she says. “It takes a lot…

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Artists of the West: Art and the Environment: Three Voices

Arts 2016       Written By Michele Corriel      

Landscape and art share a similar aesthetic, especially in the West where we live with the daily majesties of nature, carved by time, smoothed by weather. There is also a…

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Artist of the West: Pure Plein Air

Winter 2015       Written By Michele Corriel      

Aaron Schuerr sets up his easel on a tranquil Sunday afternoon, framing his view of the place where lofted clouds graze the mountains. The sun, fat with heat, rolls and slides…

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Artist of the West: Shirley Cleary

Fall 2016       Written By Michele Corriel      

For more than 40 years, Shirley Cleary’s passion for fly fishing and upland bird hunting defined her paintings. As one of the first women to tackle the genre of sporting…

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Artist of the West: The Art of the Sporting Life

Fly Fishing 2014       Written By Michele Corriel      

IT'S EARLY. THE SUN IS BARELY over the horizon. The wind, not yet awake, rests in the nearby willows. An angler stands calf-high in the sleepy current, casting his line long, arcing…

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Artist of the West: Sharing the Wonder

Fly Fishing 2009       Written By Laura Zuckerman      

KENDAHL JAN JUBB IS A WOMAN OF MANY NAMES, AN ARTIST OF MANY COLORS AND A HUMAN BEING OF MANY ATTRIBUTES. The Missoula, Mont., painter’s celebratory use of a watercolor…

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Artist of the West: The Ties That Bind

Fall 2015       Written By Michele Corriel      

Within Diana Tremaine’s paintings resides a struggle between the perfectly rendered image and the raw, undone threads that tie her to the work. There’s a tension between elements finished and…

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Artist of the West: Painting Wild

Fly Fishing 2011       Written By Michele Corriel      

"As I grew I was fervently desirous of becoming acquainted with Nature." — John James Audobon LIKE REACHING INTO A QUICK MOVING STREAM, holding the cool body of a living…

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Artist of the West: Impressionist Tradition

Fly Fishing 2015       Written By Michele Corriel      

Paul Waldum takes us to the places where we wish we were, propping our feet up on remembered mornings, damp air rising to meet the light. Guiding us with colors,…

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Artist of the West: Sara Mast’s encaustic paintings explore the cosmos

Arts 2011       Written By Michele Corriel      

EXPLORER. RESEARCHER. ASTRONOMER. Philosopher. Artist.  Sara Mast is all these things. Through her encaustic paintings she delves into the innermost constructs of the psyche and the outermost reaches of the universe.…

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Artist of the West: Landscapes Wild and Serene

Spring & Summer 2009       Written By Michele Corriel      

LIKE HOT BREATH ON COLD GLASS JANIE CAMP’S LANDSCAPES FEEL LIKE WINDOWS INTO PLACES AT ONCE WILD AND SERENE. With the hand of experience and the eye of an explorer…

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Artist of the West: The Mind of an Artist

Winter 2009       Written By Brian Schott      

YOU MIGHT THINK THAT A PROLIFIC ARTIST with the last name Apgar would be churning out bucolic national park scenes complete with spilling watrfalls and resplendent, color-busting wildflowers. But not Kelly…

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Artist of the West: Pop Culture Meets Modernism

Arts 2012       Written By Michele Corriel      

COMING FROM EUROPE AFTER THE devastation of World War II, Willem Volkersz brought with him a rich history that is reflected in everything he does. Volkersz’s work combines the quintessential American…

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Artist of the West: Maker’s Mark

Winter 2012       Written By Michele Corriel      

LIKE THE LONG UNENDING NIGHTS OF WINTER, Rod Zullo's bronzes stand against the cold, against the wind whispering through the slats, and becoming companions -- steadfast attendants revealing the old places…

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Artist of the West: Taking Chances

Fall 2014       Written By Michele Corriel      

KIRA FERCHO PULLS INTO A TURNOUT in Gallatin Canyon. In the back of her pickup she carries a 5-gallon plastic bucket filled with paints, brushes, knives and a few small canvases. …

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Artist of the West: Fine Lines

Winter 2013       Written By Michele Corriel      

When we try to pick out anything by itself we find that it is bound fast, by a thousand invisible cords that cannot be broken, to everything in the universe. — John…

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Artist of the West: A Story in Clay

Fly Fishing 2016       Written By Michele Corriel       Photography By Adrian Sanchez-Gonzalez      

Ott Jones’s hands move with the cadence of memory as he renders the life he’s studied into clay, then bronze. Each addition of malleable clay, each indentation, each thumbprint pressed…

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