The Red Man's Bones

The Red Man's Bones

George Catlin, Artist and Showman

Book - 2013
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Baker & Taylor
Highlights the life and work of the American painter, author, and traveler who specialized in images of Native Americans and who advocated for them before ultimately exploiting them in a live show that brought tragedy to both the artist and his performers.

Norton Pub
The first biography in over sixty years of a great American artist whose paintings are more famous than the man who made them.
George Catlin has been called the “first artist of the West,” as none before him lived among and painted the Native American tribes of the Northern Plains. After a false start as a painter of miniatures, Catlin found his calling: to fix the image of a “vanishing race” before their “extermination”—his word—by a government greedy for their lands. In the first six years of the 1830s, he created over six hundred portraits—unforgettable likenesses of individual chiefs, warriors, braves, squaws, and children belonging to more than thirty tribes living along the upper Missouri River.Political forces thwarted Catlin’s ambition to sell what he called his “Indian Gallery” as a national collection, and in 1840 the artist began three decades of self-imposed exile abroad. For a time, his exhibitions and writings made him the most celebrated American expatriate in London and Paris. He was toasted by Queen Victoria and breakfasted with King Louis-Philippe, who created a special gallery in the Louvre to show his pictures. But when he started to tour “live” troupes of Ojibbewa and Iowa, Catlin and his fortunes declined: He changed from artist to showman, and from advocate to exploiter of his native performers. Tragedy and loss engulfed both.This brilliant and humane portrait brings to life George Catlin and his Indian subjects for our own time. An American original, he still personifies the artist as a figure of controversy, torn by conflicting demands of art and success.

Book News
This is a biography of George Catlin (1796-1872), who became famous for painting Native American tribes of the Northern Plains--more than 30 tribes--thereby memorializing them before their extermination as he viewed it. His painting of a Mandan religious ceremony, the gruesome The Cutting Scene, brought him controversy and provoked some disbelief. Unable to sell his Indian collection in America due to political issues, he moved abroad, spending time in London and Paris. When he tried to walk in PT Barnum's shoes and tour Indians for profit, his fortunes declined. Upon his death, his entire collection was given to the Smithsonian. Catlin, at one time feted by Queen Victoria, and given a special gallery in the Louvre for his works, died in debt and was buried in Brooklyn, where his marker is now lost. There are 29 chapters following the remarkable life of Catlin in this very interesting and readable book. In addition, there are 16 pages of color and black-and-white photographs, notes, and illustration credits. Annotation ©2013 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Baker
& Taylor

Highlights the life and work of the American painter, author and traveler who specialized in images of Native Americans and who advocated for them before ultimately exploiting them in a live show that brought tragedy to both the artist and his performers. 20,000 first printing.

Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton & Company, [2013]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780393066166
0393066169
Branch Call Number: 92 C289e 2013
Characteristics: viii, 468 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm

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