About the SCM ART COLLECTION
Early Pioneer artists had little training, yet they had a great desire to bring culture and sophistication to the raw desert. These artists included: Dan Weggeland, “Stansbury Point;” George M. Ottinger, “Lake Reflections, Sheeps Head Rock, Great Salt Lake,” and “Garfield Beach and Black Rock;” C.C.A. Christensen, “Nordic Skier;” Ruben Kirkham, “Holbrook Canyon;” Alfred Lambourne, “Great Salt Lake;” Henry Lavender Adolphus Culmer, “The Temple of Om.” These artists wanted to show the grandeur of the West and the social context of their time. While primitive by nature when viewed against later artists, with much more training, their efforts are huge in a time when fifteen dollars was a high price for a painting and which most could not afford.
Christian Eisele, “Ute Indian Camp,” John Fery, “Evening Landscape,” “Moose in Landscape,” and “Mountain Scene,” are examples of a much more romantic later vision which landscape artists brought to Utah after the railroad began to provide access to popular art trends from the East coast.
These trends motivated the next generation of Utah’s best artists to obtain all the training they could in Utah, and then to study in the finest art schools in Paris, France. John Hafen (1856-1910), “Sanpete Mill, 1890” and James Taylor Harwood (1860-1940) became our best trained and most collected artists. Harwood was the academically trained artist of the time. Well traveled, his career spanned many styles, but he always came back to Utah subjects. Examples of these include “Tree, Southwest Utah Lake,” and “Where the Blackbirds Nest.” Competent in different mediums he painted “California Coast,” “The Coast of Azure” and “Wings on the Adriatic.” He regularly exhibited in the Paris Salon and in many competitions throughout the United States.
John B. Fairbanks (1856-1946), “Moonlit Anchor,” studied in France before returning to Utah. His son. J. Leo Fairbanks, also studied in France and returned to be a very active educator and mural artist. He painted “Salt Lake Valley Landscape” and the mural studies “Industry and Commerce,” “Peace and Plenty,” and “Wealth and Security.”
Cyrus Dallin (1860-1942), a major American sculptor, was born and raised in Springville, Utah, and always called it his home. He, along with John Hafen, were the original donors to Springville High School and its collection, which later became the Springville Museum of Art.
Dallin studied first in Boston and then in Paris, France. He exhibited internationally and created many important monuments. He is most known for his Indian epic series, influenced by his personal interaction and observation of the Indians in Springville whom he knew as a boy. Examples of the series are represented in this collection: “Scout,” “Medicine Man,” “Signal of Peace,” “Appeal to the Great Spirit,” “The Protest.” Individual large scale examples of these works are in Kansas City, Philadelphia, Chicago, Boston and many other locations.
Other sculptures in the collection include the delightful polychrome courtroom woodcarving by a New Mexico artist, and Stan Johnson’s “Buffalo Hunt,” “Eagle Boy,” and “Hiawatha.”
Somewhat later, other artists from the Salt Lake Valley studied in France together. Alma B. Wright (1876-1952), “French Street,” and “Silver Lake;” Mahonri Young (1878-1957), “Ville de Adam,” and “Ganado;” and Lee Greene Richards (1876-1950).
Following the First World War, New York City became the world’s leading art center. Waldo Midgley (1888-1985), “Black Rock;” LeConte Stewart (1891-1990), “Green River Desert” and “Fish Lake,” and Howell Rosenbaum (1906-1984), “Barnyard” began to bring a sense of the more modern viewpoint to Utah. They focused on local Utah subjects but added a new sense of design and social commentary which was lacking in previous generations.
Other artists of this period were Frank Zimbeaux (1872-1938), “Hotel Utah;” John Stansfield (1876-1950), “Grand Canyon;” Joseph A. F. Everett (1880-1946), “Across the Canyon;” Cornielus Salisbury (1890-1967), “Miners Cabin;” and his nephew, Paul Salisbury (1908-1972), “Freight Wagons.”
Current works by artists like Dennis Phillips, Ken Baxter and many others bring the collection to the present day.
We invite you to examine these and all of the other works of art in the Snow, Christensen & Martineau collection.