Seasons Of The Cowboy
I presently have a gallery show entitled Seasons of the Cowboy. I have included 11 very large images. You can walk up to these images (see below, click on them and they will become much larger) like “Tommy, the cowboy” or Kate, “the Aussie Cowgirl” and simply feel the presence of these individuals. Cowboys are an anachronism, or are becoming one, in our culture. The west as we understand it was formed around this iconic figure and in fact, I photographed the Marlboro Man for 18 years contributing a different slant to the icon.
In any case the icon and his ranch environment is disappearing into the dust of history as the large ranches, those not owned by movie stars and other magnates who can pay the taxes, are being converted into ‘ranchettes’ or little pieces of a ranch. The landscape of the Madison Valley in Montana, for example, was once a gorgeous flow of land, and grasses and trees. It is now becoming a sea of little houses for vacationers. The history of the west is changing quickly. The cowboy is disappearing yet the icon remains, and it is my belief that all we are going to have in a few years is the icon.
I have taken much of my lifetime defining and exploring these characters, the land upon which they live and work, their history as well as their very being. It is a texture that has its own dimensions and it is very hard for people not raised in this challenging environment to fully understand and appreciate. The environment that the cowboy framed his character on and within is what we in American understand, but generall take for granted as our beautiful WEST. There are few places on the planet that are as appealing and extraordinary as our mountains of Wyoming and Montana, or our deserts of the southwest and the great plains of North and South Dakota. We have Yellowstone, and the Grand Tetons and the Grand Canyon and it is, at times seemingly an endless variety of wonderment and wilderness. The seasons in these landscapes and human environments range from incredible heat to deep snow. It is here that the character of the cowboy and cowgirl was formed and it is a different character indeed. My camera records and continues to record tiny fragments of this life, and the amazing spaces. I trust that someday the vastness of it all can be reflected in this work…