Among many other works in the famed annual Masters of the American West at The Autry is Kim Wiggins’ standout Frank Chisum — Wild West Icon.
Artist Kim Wiggins returns to the Masters of the American West at The Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angeles with another of his bright, bold, heavily impastoed paintings.
The artwork is a particularly appropriate choice for this event that kicks off during Black History Month. The 60 x 40 painting depicts a black cowhand roping a stallion out of a vast remuda in a box canyon. The cowhand is none other than Frank Chisum.
Born a slave, Frank Chisum was purchased for $400 in 1860 by cattleman John Chisum, who set him free. He chose the name Frank Chisum for his close association with the cattleman for whom he worked as a cowhand, later as his bodyguard during the infamous Lincoln County War, and on the chuckwagon during cattle drives when John Chisum procured contracts to deliver beef to military outposts.
Frank Chisum even participated in the famous 1866 — 67 cattle drive depicted in Larry McMurtry’s loosely based historical account in Lonesome Dove. Wiggins believes that the Danny Glover role of former Texas Ranger Joshua Deets was probably based on Chisum.
Frank Chisum – Wild West Icon is the fifth in Wiggins’ The Goodnight-Loving Trail Series, which he began in 2012.
The Autry’s Masters of the American West kicks off on February 27 with an award presentation and the opening of the Miniatures online sale. Festivities culminate on March 13 with a hybrid event, wherein artwork by more than 60 top Western artists will be sold by random drawing. Artwork can be viewed online February 27 — April 11; the physical exhibit is slated to be up February 27 — April 4. Autry Museum of the West, Los Angeles, theautry.org/masters.
Raised on a ranch in New Mexico, Wiggins is now based in Roswell. He is recognized as one of the creative forerunners of the current New West movement. He is represented by Manitou Galleries in Santa Fe; Maxwell Alexander Gallery in Los Angeles; and Settlers West Galleries in Tucson, Arizona.