Hidatsa Village, Earth-covered Lodges, on the Knife River, 1810 Miles above St. Louis

Media - 1985.66.383 - SAAM-1985.66.383_1 - 81513
Copied George Catlin, Hidatsa Village, Earth-covered Lodges, on the Knife River, 1810 Miles above St. Louis, 1832, oil on canvas, 11 1414 38 in. (28.536.6 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr., 1985.66.383
Free to use

Artwork Details

Title
Hidatsa Village, Earth-covered Lodges, on the Knife River, 1810 Miles above St. Louis
Date
1832
Location
Not on view
Dimensions
11 1414 38 in. (28.536.6 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.
Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on canvas
Classifications
Keywords
  • Figure group
  • Western
  • Indian — Hidatsa
  • Landscape — river — Knife River
  • Architecture Exterior — domestic — teepee
Object Number
1985.66.383

Artwork Description

As George Catlin journeyed up the Missouri River, he wrote that the scenery was “quite peculiar and curious; rendered extremely so by the continual wild and garrulous groups of men, women, and children . . . dashing and plunging through its blue waves, enjoying the luxury of swimming, of which both sexes seem to be passionately fond.” In this image Catlin contrasted the stillness of those watching from the bluffs with the exuberance of the swimmers, one of whom plunges into the water as his comrades race to catch up with him, their arms comically waving in the air. (Catlin, Letters and Notes, vol. 1, no. 23, 1841; reprint 1973)