Friday, March 11, 2016

Western Art Week 2016: The Russell and March in Montana

CdA Galleries Room #120
It's one of the best weeks in the Western art world!  While it's definitely not one of the best places (sorry residents of Great Falls), Western Art Week has something for everyone from original paintings, sculptures, Indian artifacts, guns, spurs, weavings, and anything else you may want to buy or trade.  Collectors, dealers, and artists converge from all over the country to socialize, buy and sell classic American Western art.  The weekend features events at multiple locations from the C.M. Russell Museum, the Civic Center, the Heritage Inn, the fairgrounds to the Townhouse Inn.  The big draw is The Russell: The Sale to Benefit the C.M. Russell Museum with a lively auction, Skull Society booths, and a wonderful quick finish event at the Meadowlark Country Club.  It's an incredibly busy weekend, so I will layout a schedule of events below for the major events.

Andy Thomas painting at Western Art Week
Another major event is the March in Montana Auction and Dealer show presented by Manitou Galleries and the Coeur d'Alene Art Auction at the Townhouse Inn.  You can visit me at this event in room #120.  Be sure to stop by and visit!  The March in Montana Auction has such a unique vibe that's casual, energetic, and just good ol' fashion fun!  Did I mention there's a ton of artwork available for sale?  It's heartbreaking that this will be the last year for the March in Montana Auction at the Townhouse Inn, because the owners of the Townhouse Inn have decided to bulldoze and build a gas station.  It will be tough to find a new venue that has the character and vibe that existed for the March in Montana Auction, but teaming up with the OutWest Show and the Heritage Inn sounds like a no-brainer to me. It would be a win-win for everyone involved.  It would consolidate two terrific shows into one location making it easier for patrons to enjoy more art with less travel from one location to another.  It would bring a tremendous amount of qualified traffic to the Heritage Inn which would be awesome for the exhibitors there, and the auction would add a lot of energy to the Heritage Inn.  Not to mention it's a perfect venue to host an auction, and the March in Montana sale is during the day, so it doesn't interfere with the C.M. Russell Museum's events.  Unfortunately, for some reason, the OutWest Show organizers don't want to entertain the idea....

The OutWest Show at the Heritage Inn features roughly 140 exhibitors including galleries and lots of artists.  It's always fun to meet the artists and check out a large variety of works in different styles and subject matters.  I've talked about training your eye as a collector, and all it means is look at a lot of art, and walking down the halls of the Heritage Inn, you will quickly recognize the different caliber of artists, and you'll easily identify what you like and don't like.

A schedule of events is below; however, if you're looking for some must-do's for the weekend, first, visit me in room #120 at the Townhouse Inn, then be sure to check out the Quick Finish event hosted by the C.M. Russell Museum.  The Thursday night preview party at the C.M. Russell Museum is always a highlight and great time.  The auctions through out the weekend always offer great values on quality works, and if you're looking for something at night, be sure to grab a drink at the historic Sip-n-Dip and wave to the mermaids!  You may or may not find me there too...
The Russell Auction & Skull Society Artist Booths

The Russell: The Sale to Benefit the C.M. Russell Museum Schedule of Events

Thurs, March 17- Art Preview Party:  6pm-8pm at the Museum
Friday, March 18- Art in Action:  10am-2pm at the Meadow Lark Country Club
Saturday, March 19- Live Auction:  4:30pm at the Mansfield Convention Center


March In Montana Schedule of Events
The Townhouse Inn, 1411 10th Ave. South, Great Falls, MT

Thurs, March 17- Dealer Show and Auction Preview:  9am-5pm
Friday, March 18- Dealer Show:  9am-5pm
Auction Preview:  9am-5pm
Auction:  Noon
Saturday, March 19- Dealer Show: 9am-5pm
Auction Preview:  9am-5pm
Auction:  Noon

Out West Art Show
Best Western Plus Heritage Inn

Wednesday, March 16th - Saturday, 19th
10:00-8:00pm