Evening Arrival by Bill Anton
“I do not see myself as a biographer of the cowboy. I know some artists feel they are recording history on the ranches as life there is today, 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 brushstroke. The pack of muscle below a horse’s shoulder should be energized by a 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” I was ever interested in. Walking thunderstorms, sunstruck cedars, rimrock and artfully abstract water patterns charge the landscape with 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 marshalling the virtues of landscape, figure andequine painting into one supremely paintable subject: the American cowboy.”