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Recent Acquisitions: Vincent Price Ledger Artist (C?), untitled (Drawing #138), about 1875–78

Hood Quarterly, summer 2004

This untitled work of a mounted Cheyenne warrior dodging rifle bullets is one of the strongest images from the ledger book of the late actor Vincent Price, who collected this rare collection of eighty-six ledger drawings in the early 1960s. The drawings in the Vincent Price Ledger Book, dating from about 1875 to 1878, primarily depict the exploits of Cheyenne warriors during the conflicts of the Indian Wars, when warrior artists used new materials to chronicle the tumultuous changes in Plains life following contact with whites. The artist of this drawing, executed on page 138 of the blue- and red-lined ledger, is unknown; however, scholars have attributed it to one of four artists, tentatively titled “Artist C,” whose particular style is recognized by the long nose of the thin warrior and the seahorse-like appearance of his mount’s head. Typical of the earlier abstract representational style of Cheyenne artists, the action in this drawing moves from right to left, the composition lacks spatial references, and the scale is secondary to the action of the scene.

Featured Collection: Ledger Drawings

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