Romancing the West: Alfred Jacob Miller in the Bank of America Collection

Alfred Jacob Miller (1810-1874), War Path, n.d.  Oil and glazes over graphite, ink, and possibly watercolor on cream wove paper.  Bank of America Collection.  Photo credit: John Lamberton
Alfred Jacob Miller (1810-1874), War Path, n.d. Oil and glazes over graphite, ink, and possibly watercolor on cream wove paper. Bank of America Collection. Photo credit: John Lamberton

In 1837, Baltimore portraitist Alfred Jacob Miller accepted an invitation to join Scottish nobleman Capt. William Drummond Stewart on a six-month adventure to the Rocky Mountains. The expedition, along the Oregon Trail to the annual gathering of the fur trade, transformed Miller into an artist whose name is synonymous with the American West.

The fall, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO., presents Romancing the West: Alfred Jacob Miller in the Bank of America Collection. Thirty engaging works on paper, not seen in public since 1964, chronicles the views of one of the first American artists to paint the “Far West,” considered at the time as exotic and distant. These vibrant and poetic images depict legendary mountain men, American Indian life, and scenic landscapes.

Based on his experience, but peppered with the perceptions and attitudes of his era, Miller's portrayal of the West blended fiction with reality.

Margaret C. Conrads, Samuel Sosland Senior Curator, American Art, at the Nelson-Atkins and curator of the exhibition, explains, “Viewers will find that fact mixes with fantasy to reflect life on the frontier both as it was and as it was imagined to be.”

The Bank of America collection presents a fascinating view of Miller's process with intermediary work based on his field sketches and in preparation for watercolor and oils commissioned by patrons.

After debuting at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, from Sept. 25, 2010-January 9, 2011, the exhibition will travel to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2011. 

 

More News Feed Headlines

Andy Warhol’s 1962 “One Dollar Bill (Silver Certificate)” fetched 20.9 million pounds ($32.6 million).

Sotheby's Sells Warhol $1 Dollar Bill for $32.8 Million

  • July 01, 2015 15:25

Andy Warhol once said, “I like money on the wall." The Pop artist would likely be pleased that ...

Read More

‘Artists Unframed: Snapshots from the Archives of American Art’ by Merry A.  Foresta, published by Princeton Architectural Press 2015

'Artists Unframed' Gives Intimate Snapshots of 20th-Century Artists' Lives

  • July 01, 2015 12:44

Artists Unframed: Snapshots from the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art by independent ...

Read More

Video still of ISIS militants destroying statues at the Mosul Museum.

Islamic State Sells Looted Antiquities Online

  • July 01, 2015 00:03

Islamic State in Iraq and Syria is selling looted antiquities through eBay, Whatsapp, and ...

Read More

Winslow Homer's Milking Time

Delaware Art Museum Sells Works by Homer, Wyeth

  • June 29, 2015 23:12

The Board of Trustees of the Delaware Art Museum announced Monday the private sales of Arthur ...

Read More

Related Press Releases

Related Events from ArtfixDaily Calendar

ArtfixDaily Artwire