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While Charles Marion Russell was in his time widely acknowledged as one of the most influential Cowboy Artists, as well as one of the main contributors to the stereotypical image of the rugged cowboy, it could be said that there was one fundamental paradox in his work. On the one hand, the artist was himself a cowboy, having left his family home in Missouri at the young age of 16 to work with cattle and sheep in Montana, an experience which greatly informed his work. On the other hand, he later spent a couple of years living among the Native Americans in a reservation in Alberta, Canada, which substantially changed his views on the customs and culture of those peoples, especially those inhabiting the Great Plains of North America. Those experiences create almost an oxymoron in Russell’s body of work due to his undying esteem for two humans groups who would most often be at odds with each other.
In that way, this oil on canvas finished in 1906 and now in possession of private collectors, can be understood as an extension of that change. Even though contemporary critics might read Russell’s descriptions of Native Americans as part of an Orientalist continuum, it was the artist’s declared intention to value those peoples, portraying them not as mere villains in the story of how the West was won, but as sophisticated, proud, and cultured people. To do so, each character is painted with great attention to detail, accurately portraying their clothes and tools.
Always an expert in creating exciting compositions and telling stories, in this painting Russell employs that talent for two objectives: first, to create an illusion of movement on the canvas, using perspective and body language to make the observer believe that the characters in the painting are not static, but instead moving towards us; second, the characters are built in a way that each detail tells a part of their story, from the tired, low hanging heads of the horses, to the plumes woven into the warrior’s hair, showing off his station and experience, and to the chatting of the women behind him. Even the ground, with its well-beaten trails, helps in the telling of the story of these people, indicating that these are not pathfinders, but people used to these lands, possessing intimate knowledge of them.
Real Oil Paints, Real Brushes, Real Artists, Real Art. The Certificate of Authenticity which arrives with every painting provides an assurance and verifies the authenticity of the hand painted fine art reproduction you purchased. Each oil painting is created by hand using only the finest canvas and oil paints available.
Important Notes About Your Painting:
If you have any request to alter your reproduction of When the Plains Were His, you must email us after placing your order and we'll have an artist contact you. If you have another image of When the Plains Were His that you would like the artist to work from, please include it as an attachment. Otherwise, we will reproduce the above image for you exactly as it is.
Free shipping is included in the price of the painting. Once the painting is ready and dry enough to ship, we will roll it and ship it in a sturdy cardboard tube.
We always ship express via courier to ensure your order reaches you as soon as possible - normally within three business days. The total delivery time from the moment you place your order until the package is delivered to your door is normally between three to four weeks.
If, in the unlikely event you were dissatisfied with the painting after reviewing it in person, it can be returned for a full refund for up to 365 days after delivery.
When you receive the painting; you are free to return it for more revisions or else for a full refund minus our actual shipping cost -- which is, on average, $25 per painting.
1st Art Gallery provides a full warranty covering manufacturing and material defects for paintings purchased from our website. The warranty covers damage for normal use. Damage caused by incidents such as accidents or inappropriate use are not covered.
Depending on the degree of damage to the warranted painting, it will either be repaired or replaced. This warranty service is provided free of charge.
When purchasing a painting on its own, it will arrive rolled inside a secure tube with an extra 1.5" of white canvas on all sides so you can easily frame it in any local frame shop.
You may choose to purchase your painting framed, in which case, it will arrive "ready to hang". We offer more than 20 beautiful models, all hand finished and expertly assembled by our experienced framers.
Note that for safety reasons we can only frame up to a certain size. Once the maximum size is reached the framing option is automatically disabled.
If you are planning to frame your painting yourself,
use an existing frame, or frame it locally, you may choose to order your painting with a stretching service,
meaning that it will arrive mounted on wooden bars.
If you're considering not framing your painting at all, you may opt for a Gallery Wrap. The term Gallery Wrap refers to the way the canvas is stretched, which is by wrapping it around thick stretcher bars, about 1.5 inch thick, with the canvas being secured to the back rather than the sides of those bars.
All orders ship with UPS, FedEx or DHL and will arrive directly to your home or office. A tracking number will be emailed to you as soon as the order leaves our studio so you can track it online. All orders ship express and usually arrive within 4-5 days from the shipping date. Due to shipping restraints, many of our framed, stretched, and oversize paintings may take 6-21 days for arrival depending on the safest route determined by the postal service.