Artist Comments: Monument Valley Utah is considered one of the natural wonders of the world. It provides perhaps the most enduring and definitive images of the American Old West. This valley has long been a favorite location for filming Western movies. The isolated red mesas, striking spires and sandstone buttes surrounded by empty, sandy desert have been filmed and photographed countless times over the years.
Called Tsé Bii’ Ndzisgaii (Valley of the Rocks) by the Navajo, this famous valley lies in the southern part of the state of Utah near the Arizona border within the Navajo Nation Reservation. When you first approach the area, these rock “monuments” will take your breath away. The eerie rock formations make you feel as if you’ve been transported to another planet. It is truly one of the most majestic places on earth.
The first time I visited this national park I knew right away I’d love painting this beautiful valley. I’ve actually painted Monument Valley several times. I have memories of several paintings I did of this place when I was a youngster studying under my dad who was also a professional oil painting artist. My dad loved painting this location too and painted several oil paintings himself. None of those early paintings are around anymore. I’m not sure what became of them. My dads paintings sold to art collectors and local businesses in the small community where we lived.
For more information about Monument Valley visit here.
Artist Comments: Covered wagons and pioneers are one of the first things that come mind when I think of the Old West. I love that sense of adventure and pioneering spirit that drove early settlers to pack up their family, mount a covered wagon and move across the Great Plains to settle out West. They are indeed an icon of the American Old West.
Sometimes the covered wagon was also called a “prairie schooner” because the white canvas covers of the wagons crossing the prairies reminded some writers of the sails of a ship at sea.