Charles Marion Russell (American, 1864–1926),
A Serious Predicament
oil on canvas, 20 x 30 in.; 50.8 x 76.2 cm
Gift of Foxley & Co, 2000.27
The two artists most inextricably linked to the Old West are Charlie Russell and Frederic Remington. Their sculptures, paintings, and magazine illustrations were immensely popular in the late nineteenth century and are revered by aficionados today. Russell worked as a cowboy in his youth and lived in Montana most of his life. He took pride in the accuracy of his ranch scenes, which are typically full of action and adventure. Russell’s titles usually reveal the stories that his images are intended to tell. The alternate title for this painting, Range Mother, further spells out the “serious predicament” in which the charging cow has placed the anxious cowboys.