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According to Alan Axelrod, author of Art of the Golden West, “The career of Charles Schreyvogel, one of the most exciting painters of western life, especially cavalry subjects, was marked by poverty, struggle, and frustration.” ...

“In 1893 he sketched personalities from Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, earning enough money to spend the balance of the year touring the West, where he made studies of Utes, western army life, and cowboys. He brought back to his Hoboken studio a collection of western gear, which he used in creating his finished paintings. None of these works sold, however, and he finally offered one, My Bunkie, to a restaurant on consignment. When the restaurant owner refused to display it properly, hanging it in a dark corner, the artist angrily took it back and entered it in the 1900 National Academy Exhibition—with so little hope of success that he did not even bother to leave his address with exhibition officials.

“The painting won first prize—$300—but, as no one at the academy had ever heard of Schreyvogel, the painter was located with some difficulty. After the exhibition prize, the artist enjoyed ‘overnight’ success.” ...

“In contrast to such artists as Remington and Russell, Schreyvogel worked slowly and painstakingly, scrupulously researching his subjects and executing large canvases. While his output was relatively limited, his work was widely reproduced. The artist enjoyed his hard-won success for little more than a decade, succumbing to blood poisoning in 1912...”

LITERATURE:
James D. Horan, The Life and Art of Charles Schreyvogel (New York, New York: Crown Publishers
inc., 1969), gravure print illustrated
William Foxley, Frontier Spirit (Denver, Colorado: The Museum of Western Art, 1983), plate 75, page 109, illustrated

PROVENANCE:
Private Collection, California

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