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VERSO
Artist label with signature and title Artist’s statement (see below)

Whiskey Smugglers was awarded the Gold Award for water solubles at the 1998 Cowboy Artists of America Thirty-Third Annual Exhibition.

The artist’s statement reads, “It became illegal to bring whiskey into Sioux land because of its destructive powers among the People. However, there were always traders willing to take a risk, and look for an easy and profitable trade. This band of warriors traveling across the sand hills of what is now northwestern Nebraska has come upon just such foolhardy traders. There is no guarantee that this adventure will end successfully.”

Describing this painting Don Hedgpeth wrote, “A band of Sioux warriors has come upon a wagon loaded down with contraband. The strangers talk and smile with their mouths, but their eyes and their hearts are hard. The white man’s whiskey was a curse upon the People. It induced an initial euphoric state like that experienced during a sacred vision quest. But there were no spiritual revelations ... nothing but drunkenness and despair. The white man’s empty promises and treaties could rob the People of their land. His whiskey could steal their souls.”

EXHIBITED
Cowboy Artists of America Thirty-Third Annual Exhibition, Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZ, Oct 23-Nov 21, 1998

LITERATURE
Exhibition Catalog, Cowboy Artists of America Thirty-Third Annual Exhibition (Phoenix, AZ: Phoenix Art Museum, 1998), p 27, illustrated
Exhibition Catalog, Cowboy Artists of America Thirty-Fourth Annual Exhibition (Phoenix, AZ: Phoenix Art Museum, 1999), p 70, illustrated
Don Hedgpeth, Spirit of the Plains People (Shelton, CT: The Greenwich Workshop, 2001), pp 34-5, illustrated
Harley Brown, Tribute to the Plains People (Seymour, CT: The Greenwich Workshop, 2012), p 171, illustrated

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