“I do not see myself as a biographer of the cowboy. I know some artists feel they are recording a historical portrayal of ranch life today in the American West. But the focus of my work has always been mood and passion. If I’m recording anything, I’m recording how I feel about the West. I want the viewer to feel the drama of atmosphere and the mystery of a western night. I want the volume and portent of a cloud to be evident in the calligraphy of a brush stroke. The pack of the muscle below a horse’s shoulder should be energized by the gestural application of paint.
You see, I love to paint. And I love the American West. I was born in Chicago, but the Sierra Nevada, Sangre de Cristo, Sawatch and a hundred other ranges of our Rocky Mountains were the only “big shoulders” that ever interested me. Walking thunderstorms, sunstruck cedars, rimrock and artfully abstract water patterns charge the landscape here with an impossible beauty.
Amidst this nobility is its caretaker: the rancher. With the natural ease of generations bred to the saddle, he is a powerful image, further ennobled by a fine horse. An artist under the spell of the west has the privilege of marshaling the virtues of landscape, figure and equine painting into one supremely paintable subject: the American cowboy. TO GOD BE THE GLORY”
Source: Bill Anton
Would I Lie To You
Artist: Bill Anton (b. 1957)
Artist: Bill Anton (b. 1957)Description: Pencil (1988) | Image Size: 20”h x 24”w; Framed Size: 28 ½”h x 32 ½”w
Artist: Bill Anton (b. 1957)Description: Pencil (1987) | Image Size: 14”h x 11”w; Framed Size: 20”h x 17”w
Artist: Bill Anton (b. 1957)Description: Pencil (1989) | Image Size: 11”h x 14”w; Framed Size: 19”h x 22”w
Up To Summer Ranges
Artist: Bill Anton (b. 1957)Description: Pencil (1984) | Image Size: 22”h x 36”w; Framed Size: 28 ¼”h x 42 3/8”w
“Up To Summer Ranges” is a relatively large drawing, and the scene is of a lone cowboy moving his cattle to higher ground. Anton has balanced the action of the scene by placing the mounted rider on one side of a tree that dominates the foreground and the most prominent feature, the lead steer, on the other side giving the impression that the steer has just made the turn around the tree and will continue toward the viewer and out of the viewing frame. The balance of the herd is shown obscured in dust behind the main figures conveying a sense of continuous movement. The action here is steady, but not hurried. The implication is that this activity is a regular occurrence of working cattle on a modern ranch.
High Tailin’ It
Artist: Bill Anton (b. 1957)Description: Pencil (1989) | Image Size: 14”h x 11”w; Framed Size: 21 ¾”h x 18 ¾”w