172 Bronco Buster

Winning Bid Undisclosed
This item SOLD at 2015 Apr 11 @ 13:57UTC-7 : PDT/MST
Category Western Americana
Auction Currency USD
Start Price NA
Estimated at 50,000.00 - 75,000.00 USD
Bronco Buster
Artist: Remington, FredericDate of Birth: 1861-1909
Medium: Bronze, cast number 265
Dimensions: 24 inches high
Signed: Signed

By 1893, Frederic Remington was beginning to worry that the era of the cowboy and the free range was vanishing fast. Seeking what was left of the cowboy way of life, he traveled to the Southwest and crossed over into Mexico, where he lighted on ÒPatron JackÕsÓ enormous San Jose de Bavicora ranch, situated in rugged Apache country some 200 miles northwest of Chihuahua. Already AmericaÕs foremost illustrator of life in the West, Remington was searching for something that was slipping away, something he found south of the border, something that would take him back in time. Bavicora would point out the road from pen and ink, watercolor, and oil paint, to wax and bronze. Bavicora would lead to the creation of his best known, and perhaps his greatest workÑBronco Buster. Earlier, Remington had written in his notes: Ò[The cowboy] was a combination of the Kentucky or Tennessee man with the Spanish.Ó Remington would find this combination in ÒPatron JackÓ Follamsbee (Jack Gilbert). Jack had been born into a Kentucky racehorse family, but, in a spirit of adventure characteristic of the time, he wrested Bavicora from the Mexican wilderness, earning the loyalty of his vaqueros and foreman through sheer audacity. On his return to New Rochelle, NY, a friend of RemingtonÕs, a playwright, came to visit him in his studio. Observing the ease with which Remington moved figures around in the picture plane, the playwright advised him that since he worked in three dimensions in his paintings, he should try his hand at sculpting. His imagination fired, Remington went to work, creating Bronco Buster in sculptorÕs wax. What remained was to find a foundry to cast the piece. The problem, according to RemingtonÕs sculptor friends, was that the piece was so top heavy it would not stand. Remington rejected this criticism. When he sought out and found the Henry Bonnard Works, run by French immigrants, and then, later, the Roman Bronze Works run by the dashing Riccardo Bertelli, the solution presented itself. These European artisans had brought techniques dating back to the Greeks to New York, techniques lost to Rome and rediscovered in Renaissance Italy, techniques that would allow a work like Bronco Buster to be cast in bronze and stand freely. Every image, every piece of footage of the Oval Office in the White House features Theodore RooseveltÕs Bronco Buster. RemingtonÕs image of the rider trying to master the bucking bronc is undoubtedly the single most recognizable artistic conception of the American West.