About this Artwork
The eroded limestone cliffs along the upper Missouri River, called hoodoos, impressed Bodmer, though Prince Maximilian found them austere and forbidding. Bodmer’s accomplished landscapes form a significant part of the record of his travels with Prince Max. Max described his confusion when he first saw the rock formations, thinking that they were “two white mountain castles . . . [that] when seen from a distance, so perfectly resembled buildings raised by art, that we were deceived by them, till we were assured of our error.” Bodmer made sure the bighorn sheep they saw on the slopes were a prominent part of his composition.