Art in the Beartooths shines with colors

By Eleanor Guerrero
Thursday, July 19, 2018

Potter Marcia Selson gave a demonstration with her kiln.

Photos by Eleanor Guerrero

John Potter shows that even Native warriors took time to “smell the flowers.”

Kevin Red Star had a close encounter with Bison along the Big Horn.

Terry Cooke Hall enjoys dramatic portraits.

It was a fine Saturday morning, July 14, in Red Lodge for Art in the Beartooths, the 45th annual fundraiser for the Arts Guild. There was a silent auction and a live auction with three signature artists, Laurie Lee, of Powell, Wyoming, Shirle Wempner of Big Timber and Hal Olson of Red Lodge.

The crowd came early to see the live auction artists at work perfecting their submissions or starting new ones. Wild West subjects were widely displayed in mediums ranged from oil and canvas to wood and clay, and there were horses, grizzlies, and buffalo afoot, as well as cowboys and Indians.

Attendees were treated to meeting their favorite artists and watching them at work.

John Potter has been a fixture at Art in the Beartooths for years. His subject this time was a Native on horseback among lush wildflowers. Asked if he were changing his subjects he said Natives are always portrayed warlike. “We love the warrior. I wanted to portray a different part of the life of the warrior. We all need to take time to smell the flowers.”

Terry Cooke Hall came from Bozeman where she specializes in portraits. Her roots are in Southern California. She is primarily influenced by Robert Moore, with whom she studied. She chose portraiture because, “I love people!”

Harry Koyama, a popular Hardin painter of grizzlies with a studio in Billings, says he chooses his subjects because “One of my clients likes them. I like them! It’s one of my favorite subjects.” He actually saw his subjects, a sow grizzly and her cub but at different times, not together. As part of the magic of the artist’s mind, he could make them a pair. He was making a smaller version of a 3 x 5 foot painting he had previously painted.

Artist Tom Wolfe said he captured his neighbors in action at branding time in the spring. But he put their location “in my backyard. That’s Mount Wood in the background” in the Beartooths. His main point was however, “It’s the lifestyle” he wanted to capture.

Kevin Red Star said he took a trip by the Big Horn River to view buffalo. He was naturally inspired to paint them.

Brenna Tyler had a horse sculpture made of wood.

Lee Walker seemed to mesmerize a group of onlookers painting one fish on two canvases.

Potter Marcia Selson was turning out pots right before people’s eyes with her own super kiln. “It takes 25 minutes at a temperature of 1650,” she said as she deftly handled a steaming pot, dipping it into cooling water.

Elliott Eaton enjoyed viewing, as well as making, hollyhocks and iris.

The artists were at work most of the day. Later that evening a great dinner and the live auction followed.

Upcoming Events

  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, June 21, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Monday, June 24, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, June 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 27, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

Fax: 406-446-2225

Toll-Free: 800-735-8843

Open: Monday-Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.