At the Briscoe Western Art Museum
By: Robyn Milora
On Thursday, June 11, 2017, the Briscoe Western Art Museum hosted a VIP preview event for members and invited guests to view a very rare set of George Catlin’s North American Indian Portfolio. Catlin’s Portfolio represents one of the most comprehensive, highly realistic and powerful portraits of the American West during the frontier era and is the result of Catlin’s travels among, and life with, the Great Plains Indian tribes. These tribes include the Mandan, Sioux (Lakota), Blackfeet and Crow, among others. Also included in the exhibit are a reference reading area and an excerpted documentary film produced by the Smithsonian Institution. The exhibit runs from June 23 to September 4, 2017, and is located in the Jack Guenther Pavilion at the museum.
Catlin’s Portfolio, one of only three known sets in the world, contains 31 hand-painted color plates depicting the clothing/adornments, culture, and daily living of the Great Plains tribes. For example, Ball Players provides a glimpse into an early version of lacrosse. Catlin spent summers during the years 1832 to 1837 sketching the tribes, finishing the paintings in oils during the winter. During the years 1837-1852, Catlin toured the United States, England, France and Holland, exhibiting his paintings and Indian crafts, accompanied by members of various Indian tribes. It was during this period that he published the North American Indian Portfolio.
For more information: The Briscoe Western Art Museum is located at 210 West Market Street, San Antonio, Texas. The museum is open Tuesday 10:00 am-9:00 pm (free admission from 4:00-9:00 pm) and Wednesday-Sunday, 10:00 am-5:00 pm. For directions and tickets, call the museum at 210.507.4864. You may also email firstname.lastname@example.org or log on to BriscoeMuseum.org.