Great Western Art Rendezvous presentation highlights Maynard Dixon

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Great Falls is host to the Great meeting of Western art this weekend, with artists from around the world showing their work and passion. As part of the festivities, a presentation was organized on Saturday August 20, 2022, on Maynard Dixonknown to many as one of the leading American artists of the 20th century, best known for his iconic depictions of the American West.

While Dixon was originally from California, he painted subjects in Arizona, New Mexico, before finally settling in southern Utah. It was here that he acquired his characteristic style of unique compositions, often featuring low horizons and simplified but imposing clouds and rock formations in bright colors.

Dixon primarily focused on preserving the image of Native Americans, whom he believed were disappearing from the American West.

The seminar was hosted by Dr. Mark Sublette, who explained, “Dixon is embracing this modern west, in the ’20s, which is unique. He’s doing a show in Chicago, and they’re calling him ‘the artist of the modern west”, to which he replies, back home they call me a “buggy and horse guy”. So he has a unique style. He lives in a period of 1875-1946, he sees everything .”

in January 1908, Dixon moved from San Francisco to New York in search of greater opportunities for his illustration work. He established a studio at the Lincoln Arcade on Broadway, which housed many artists and writers. These Old West artists, writers, actors, showmen, and others with an emotional and intellectual interest in the West and American art used Dixon’s Square as an informal meeting place. It was around this time that Dixon met Charles M. Russell at the studio.

“Charles Russell and Dixon have that bond,” Sublette said. “It’s an intimate connection that a lot of people don’t know about. So it made sense to be able to talk about someone I’ve written books about. I understand artists and this relationship with Charles Russell who is the the greatest Montana artist that ever lived.”


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