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Blackbird's Grave, a Back View, Prairies Enameled with Flowers

1832 George Catlin Born: Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 1796 Died: Jersey City, New Jersey 1872 oil on canvas 11 1/4 x 14 3/8 in. (28.5 x 36.6 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr. 1985.66.365 Not currently on view


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To suggest the vastness of the Great Plains in his small landscapes, George Catlin often assumed an elevated viewpoint. Blackbird’s grave, a site visited by Lewis and Clark nearly three decades earlier, was the final resting-place of an Omaha chief who had been buried astride his favorite horse. The artist painted this work in 1832 on his first extended voyage up the Missouri River.

Keywords

Landscape - plain

Landscape - United States

Monument - gravestone - Blackbird

Western

painting

paint - oil

fabric - canvas

metal - aluminum - support added