J. Craig Sheppard
J. Craig Sheppard
Cowboy Gamblers in a Saloon, 1940
- Watercolor on illustration board
- Image (sight): 14" high x 19" wide
- Frame: 22" high x 26.5” wide
- Signature: Signed and dated, bottom center
Click image to enlarge.
About the work
An extremely rare 1940 watercolor by J. Craig Sheppard (1913-1978) depicting cowboy gamblers in a saloon. The work was painted at a time when Sheppard was completing graduate studies at the University of Oklahoma, just a few years before he moved to Reno where he served as the chair of the university’s fledgling art department. The condition of the painting is remarkably fine. Housed in a period frame under glass.
Provenance — A backing board behind the watercolor was inscribed with the following note: “From lobby of Meadow Acres Ballroom opened July 1939, closed February 1968. ‘Home of Name Bands’ in Topeka, Kansas, 2950 Topeka Blvd.”
About the artist…
Craig Sheppard was born in Lawton, Oklahoma, in 1913. His connection to Nevada began in 1947 when he arrived in Reno to serve as chair of the University of Nevada’s art department. His appreciation for cowboy life, which never left him, was deeply rooted in his own experience as a rodeo rider in the arenas of Oklahoma.
Over the course of his life, Sheppard’s work strayed into a variety of styles and themes, including abstraction. But his signature work—and the subject he is most remembered for—is represented by the Cowboy Gamblers in a Saloon.
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