Frederic Remington, the last painter of the Wild West.

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Born October 4, 1861, in Canton, New York, Frederic Remington was one of the last major artists to record the swiftly fading Wild West as an illustrator and painter. In 1881 he left to wander the west. For a time, he worked as a cowboy, but he left in 1886 to study at the Art Students League in New York. However, he still continued to visit the West. He received his first commission from Harper's Weekly, a depiction of a skirmish in the last great Indian war, led by Geronimo.

By 1891, he settled in New Rochelle, NY. Adorning his studio were a number of materials from the West that he used for references in his work. One of the distinctions between his work and the work of the illustrators of the dime novels of the day was the naturalistic definition of form and space that he used, contrary to the sensationalism of the day.

In 1895, he was inspired to begin sculpting in clay. He was inspired by the work of Frederic Ruckstull during the summer of 1895. His bronze Bronco Buster carried in his tradition of detail and naturalism. In this way, Remington was able to bring new life and a new dimension to his works.

During the Spanish-American War, Remington went to Cuba to serve as an artist and correspondent. He supplied illustrations for magazines and periodicals but longed to return to his real love; the Old West. In 1902 he sculpted the spectacular Comin' through the Rye. It went against the trends of the time by not expressing weight or support.

All in all, Remington created 2,700 works of art. His works kept the Old West alive in the minds of Americans. He died on December 26, 1909.


Siegfried, Joan C. "Remington, Frederic." 2002 Grolier...