Wyoming Art History

with an emphasis on representational art



This section of the Traditional Fine Arts Organization (TFAO) catalogue Topics in American Art is devoted to the topic "Wyoming Art History." Articles and essays specific to this topic published in TFAO's Resource Library are listed at the beginning of the section. Clicking on titles takes readers directly to the articles and essays.

Following the links to Resource Library articles and essays are a listing of museums in the state which have provided materials to Resource Library for this or any other topic.

Listed after Resource Library articles, essays and museums are links to online resources outside the TFAO website. Following these resources is information about offline resources including DVDs, paper-printed books, journals and articles. Our goal is to present complete knowledge relating to this section of Topics in American Art.

TFAO welcomes volunteers to further the broadening of knowledge related to this topic. To learn more about TFAO's many volunteer opportunities please click here. Volunteers are welcome to contribute suggestions for additional content in this catalogue. Please see Catalogue and database management for details.


Resource Library essays listed by author name in alphabetical order, followed by articles:

As of April, 2015 Resource Library contains 201 pages including the state's name, yet no articles or essays specific to the state.

We recommend that researchers always search within Resource Library for additional material. Please see TFAO's page How to research topics not listed for more information.


Museums and other non-profit sources of Resource Library articles and essays:

Buffalo Bill Historical Center

National Museum of Wildlife Art

National Park Academy of the Arts

Nelson Museum of the West

Wyoming State Museum


(above: National Museum of Wildlife Art, July, 2012. Photo by John Hazeltine)


Other online information:

Artists from Wyoming in Wikipedia. Accessed August, 2015.

Boots, Brushes and The Bighorn Mountains is a 2015 exhibit at the Brinton Museum which says: "Works within this exhibit range in date from the 1860s to the late 1930s and include Thomas Moran, Hans Kleiber, Bill Gollings, Frederic Remington, Joseph Henry Sharp, WHD Koerner and William Henry Jackson, to name just a few." Accessed 10/18 

Carrie Ballantyne Comes Home is a 2018 exhibit at the Brinton Museum which says: "Known for her representational art, from within our ranching culture, images of male and female, young and old, Ballantyne's exquisite portraits are more than just a documentation of life in the West. Her art tells a story about the individual lives of the people who live in the American West."  Accessed 8/18

Linework to Linen: The Prints and Paintings of Joel Ostlind is a 2019 exhibit at the Brinton Museum which says: "An exhibit of art by Joel Ostlind of Big Horn featuring his intaglios and acrylic paintings depicting his favorite subjects -- Wyoming and the landscape of the West. New work is included in this presentation."  Also see article in Casper Star Tribune  Accessed 11/19

Wyoming (sampling of artists and works connected to state) from askArt. Accessed August, 2015.

Wyoming State Capitol from State of Wyoming. Accessed August, 2015.

Wyoming State Capitol from Wikipedia. Accessed August, 2015.


TFAO's Distinguished Artists catalogue provides online access to biographical information for artists associated with this state. Also, Search Resource Library for online articles and essays concerning both individual artists associated with this state's history and the history of art centers and museums in this state. Resource Library articles and essays devoted to individual artists and institutions are not listed on this page.


Books, listed by year of publication, with most recently published book listed first:

Seeing Yellowstone in 1871: Earliest Descriptions & Images from the Field, By Albert Charles Peale, Marlene Deahl Merrill. Translated by Marlene Deahl Merrill. Illustrated by Thomas Moran, William Henry Jackson. Contributor Albert Charles Peale, Marlene Deahl Merrill. Published by U of Nebraska Press, 2005. ISBN 0803287879, 9780803287877. 85 pages. Google Books says: "In 1871 the young mineralogist Albert Peale set out with the vaunted Hayden Expedition to map and explore the Yellowstone Basin. Ferdinand Hayden asked Peale, his former student, to write a series of letters to the Philadelphia Press about the survey's work. Just as these letters, the first impressions of Yellowstone sent back from the field, introduced nineteenth-century readers to some of the most breathtaking wonders of the American West, they allow readers today to rediscover one of the nation's most beloved and visited natural areas as it was just five months before it became the world's first national park. nbsp; Written by a scientist for the general reader, Peale's letters convey the grandeur of Yellowstone with great clarity and immediacy, even as they offer apt, detailed descriptions of the basin's geologic features, from the geysers-Giant, Grotto, and Mud, among others-to the creeks and rivers, craters and springs. Illustrating these descriptions are the earliest artistic images of Yellowstone, also done during the expedition-watercolor field sketches by Thomas Moran, photographs by William Henry Jackson, and the now little-known works of the party's official artist, Henry Wood Elliott. Ranging from dramatic panoramic landscapes to lighthearted sketches of the expedition's more personal moments, these images combine with Peale's written impressions to give readers a true and rare sense of what it was like for these men to marvel at Yellowstone for the first time." (right: book cover image courtesy of Google Books)

Drawn to Yellowstone: America's First National Park, by Peter H. Hassrick, Los Angeles: Autry Museum of Western Heritage, 2002.

Yellowstone and the Great West: Journals, Letters, and Images from the 1871 Hayden Expedition, By Marlene Merrill. Published by University of Nebraska Press, 1999. Original from the University of Michigan. Digitized Sep 24, 2008. ISBN 0803231482, 9780803231481. 315 pages. Google Books says: "Here, for the first time in paperback, is a fascinating daily record of Ferdinand Hayden's historic 1871 scientific expedition through Utah, Idaho, and Montana Territories to the Yellowstone Basin. The expedition's findings quickly led Congress to establish Yellowstone as the world's first national park. In addition to its scientific discoveries, the expedition is famous for producing the earliest on-site images of Yellowstone, by its photographer, William Henry Jackson, and its guest artist, Thomas Moran. Marlene Deahl Merrill has woven together a compelling daily narrative from the field writings of three expedition members: unpublished journals kept by mineralogist Albert Peale and geologist George Allen, periodic reports by Peale to his hometown newspaper, and letters from Hayden to his friend and mentor Spencer Baird at the Smithsonian Institution. Enriching this narrative are Jackson's photographs of camp scenes and landscapes; rare panoramic drawings by the party's topographical artist, Henry Elliott; maps; an introduction; and extensive annotations." (right: book cover image courtesy of Google Books)

Rendezvous to Roundup: The First 100 Years of Art in Wyoming, By Sarah E. Boehme, Buffalo Bill Historical Center. Published 1992 by Buffalo Bill Historical Center. Painting, American / Wyoming/ Exhibitions. 49 pages. ISBN:0931618304. Catalogue for the exhibition held at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center, Cody, Wyoming, May 25 through September 3, 1940.

One Hundred Years of Artist Activity in Wyoming, 1837-1937, By University of Wyoming, Wyoming University. Art Museum, Art Museum. Published by The Museum, 1976. 79 pages



Peter Hassrick, "Yellowstone, art, and the emergence of aesthetic conservation" Yellowstone Science 13 (Summer 2005)


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