2019-03-01 Western Art Collector

(Martin Jones) #1
Guide to Collecting Western Art In


Auction Preview

All Eyes on Russell

Charles M. Russell, the man and the myth, takes center stage at the
annual event that bears his name in Great Falls, Montana.


hen work began on the
planning of a new art exhibition
and auction in Great Falls,
Montana, the museum staff at the C.M. Russell
Museum started pitching show titles around the
room. These likely had different combinations
of “Great Falls,” “Montana,” “Charlie Russell”
and “Western,” producing results like Great
Falls Western Art Show or Charlie Russell’s
Western Sale in Montana. At one point a brave
soul blurted out, “Let’s just call it The Russell.”

This is all hypothetical of course—and would
have occurred 51 years ago—but it seems
very plausible considering the audacity of a
name as simple, as effective and as instantly
iconic as The Russell. The annual event, which
includes a variety of elements and culminates
in a major auction, is not just named after
the famous Western artist; it revolves around
him and his legacy. It is hosted in Russell’s
hometown, smack in the middle of a week
often referred to simply as Russell Week, items

up for sale include pieces by Russell as well
as works by artists inspired by him, and it is
hosted by the C.M. Russell Museum, which
has on its property both the Russell home and
studio. To call Russell the star of the show is a
vast understatement.
This year’s event, formally titled The Russell:
An Exhibition and Sale to Benefit the C.M.
Russell Museum, once again features a suite of
events that includes exhibitions, artist booths,
quick draws and live auctions. All of the

Bidders participate in a sale at The Russell: An Exhibition and Sale to Benefit the C.M. Russell Museum in Great Falls, Montana.
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