Coeur d’Alene Art Auction – notes from the auction

The auction is still a day away.  I got here yesterday afternoon and was really impressed with the Grand Ball room in the Silver Legacy Casino in Reno where the auction is being held.  More importantly I’m impressed with the art and the display of my dad’s sculptures.

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The twelve of the sculptures are all together and it is a very impressive group of sculptures.  The stampede is in the center of the display by the auctioneer’s podium.  It is there right in front of a large Albert Bierstadt painting titled “Mount Rainier”.

This evening I’ll be signing books starting at 5:00pm.

– Matt Jackson

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Rare Harry Jackson sculptures at the Coeur d’Alene Art Auction

I’ll be at the Coeur d’Alene Art Auction this weekend.  The Harry Jackson Estate has 13 sculptures in the auction.


The sculptures in the auction are like a greatest hits collection of Harry Jackson sculpture.  The Two Champs, Pony Express Painted, Marshal Painted, The Flag Bearer Painted and of course the Stampede sculpture.  In The Wind is a hauntingly beautiful mask of Sacagawea and has not been at auction before.  The Cowboys Meditation Painted was the first sculpture that he painted.  The sculpture had been completed, but after a while the color of the cowboy’s shirt nagged at him.  He wanted to know in such a situation what would the color of the shirt be and if he was wondering that so would other people wonder.  If it was a painting he’d know.  So he painted the sculpture and when people saw the final result they loved it.  The other sculptures in the auction have a tremendous history as well: Bronc Stomper Painted, Dog Soldier Painted, Foreman Painted, Sacagawea 3′ study for a monument, The Victor Painted, Algonquin Chief and Warrior Painted.

Over the next couple of day’s I’ll post images of the sculptures and some back ground on them.

A link to the auction website is:

A link to the online auction catalog is: Catalog

I’ll be at the preview on Friday signing books.  I’ll have the following books with me:

  • Harry Jackson by Harry N. Abrams
  • Lost Wax Bronze Casting 2nd Edition Hard Cover
  • Lost Wax Bronze Casting 1st Edition Hard Cover signed by Harry Jackson
  • Harry Jackson – 40 Year Catalog
  • A monument in bronze Sacagawea by Harry Jackson

I will also have the following videos available:

  • Harry Jackson – A Man and his Art
  • The Art of Harry Jackson

Hope to see you there,

Matthew Jackson.

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Do or Dine restaurant opens in Brooklyn, NY

Luke Jackson is one of 4 partners to open up a new restaurant in Brooklyn named “Do or Dine.”  It’s just opened less than a week ago!  It’s exciting to see it come together and they have a facebook page ( ) with photos showing it being built.  It’s in the food blog at the New York Times  (

Some photos from their facebook page. that shows the interior and the mural on the wall of the patio area they have behind the restaurant.

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Luke is also an artist in his own right, although it’s taken a back seat to the restaurant this past year.  Here’s his website where you can see his work:

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Harry Jackson sculptures at La Versiliana in Pietrasanta, Italy

Villa at La Versiliana park in Marina di Pietrasanta

Over the 28th and 29th of May 2011 there was a show called L’Arte del Cavallo (Art of the Horse) at La Versiliana park in Marina di Pietrasanta, Italy.

We will be updating this post with better photos as we get them. These photos are just quick snapshots of some of the sculptures on display.

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The name of Harry Jackson in that area is synonymous with the American West and horses and the life of the cowboy. People still remember in 1984 when his 22 foot sculpture of John Wayne on horseback titled “The Horseman” could be seen from a main road right next to the marble yard that had built the marble steps for it.

The Horseman Painted sculpture on display at marble yard in Pietrasanta Italy

Dad had it taken down to the marble yard to make sure it all went together well before it was shipped to America. The sculpture was on view for a week or more and drew thousands of viewers.

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A glimpse of Harry Jackson’s life – First time traveling to Italy

Here are some sketches from the first trip my father took to Italy.

Bay of Naples 7/9/1954 by Harry Jackson, copyright Harry Jackson Trust

Naples street scene by Harry Jackson 7/9/1954 copyright Harry Jackson Trust

I want to show these sketches because they are from the first trip my father took to Italy and the rest of Europe.  He arrived in 1954 to study the masters of the renaissance and to part ways with the abstract expressionist school of art in NY.  It is a very important period in his continuing development as an artist and as a maverick.

Most of the sketches he made at this time were made to study the work of the masters.  That was what he was there to do.  Even so sketching one’s surroundings and working from life is an important part of developing one’s artistic voice.  One can see here that he did that as well as study the works of the masters.

I am currently in Italy visiting my father’s home and studio.  It is where I was born and all my brothers and sisters were born.  Well my sister Molly was born in Sweden, but she was at the home in Italy soon enough. The home in Italy was built in the mid 60’s, just before I was born, and has been an important and constant part in the lives of all of us children.  It is where an incredible amount of his creative work has been done and where his foundry was located.  All of this was in his future when he first came to Italy and made the simple sketches above.

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A glimpse of Harry Jackson’s life – Coming to Wyoming

Thank you to all who have commented on the blog post about my father’s death.  There are some good acquaintances and stories being kept alive with those comments.  My siblings and I have enjoyed these comments about how other people viewed and were affected by our larger than life father.  This is the first in a series of posts where each gives a small glimpse into a different aspect of the life and art of Harry Jackson.

LIFE Magazine cover 2/8/1937 Winter on the rangeOne of the seminal events in his life was running away to Wyoming.  This is the cover of LIFE magazine dated February 8, 1937.  The picture is titled “Winter on the range.”  It’s a photo by Charlie Belden of winter on the Pitchfork ranch in Meeteetse Wyoming.  The Z bar T ranch which is referred to in the article is a ranch and brand that was part of the Pitchfork.  You can see the entire article here: “Winter on the Range

My father saw this article and knew that was where he wanted to go.  In 1938 he arrived in Cody, WY by train.  The train tracks didn’t go any farther.  It took him another year to get to the Pitchfork Ranch outside of Meeteetse, WY on the upper greybull river.


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Harry Jackson dies at 87

photo by Chris Gimmeson, Buffalo Bill Historical Center

My father passed away on Monday April 25th, 2011 after a long, rich, tumultuous life.  He was 87.

He was a force of nature, full of rage, love, humor, and madness.  And he burned at an intensity that few could withstand for very long.  A war-decorated WWII Marine who served on the front lines in the Pacific, he endured lifelong consequences from head injuries suffered during the amphibious assault at Betio Island, Tarawa Atoll.  Epileptic seizures and uncontrolled rage marred many episodes in his life after the war.

He was a walking paradox.  He was brilliant in his artistic life, yet unable to recognize and receive proper treatment for his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  One minute, he would bring a complete stranger into his innermost circle; and the next, he wouldn’t trust even those closest to him.

He leaves a creative legacy marked by astounding courage and accomplishment.  His artistic career spans six decades, with work that covers an incredibly wide spectrum: from the early Marine works (we was a combat artist), through the abstract expressionist paintings that were featured in Life Magaine, all the way to his much celebrated western art.

All of his children would like to extend their deep gratitude to his staff (in Italy and in Cody) for their invaluable contributions, especially during these last years of his life.  Their respect and loyalty never wavered during these challenging years, and that is a rarity these days.

I live in Cody and have spent much of the last year with him. My brothers and sisters have been visiting him over the last year.  During the last week several of us were with him almost continually.   We have a complicated relationship with him that resists an easy short summation but we all believe he is finally at peace.  This much is indisputable: He was a profoundly gifted, larger than life, creative maverick, and anyone who met him will remember the mark he left on their lives.

There will be further information on a public service to celebrate his life, in the weeks to come.  I welcome any memories or stories of my Dad or of his art work.  You may leave them in the comments section below.  The comments are moderated so there may be a few days delay before they appear on the blog.

Molly, Jesse, Luke, Chloe and I thank everyone for their warm wishes at this time.

Thank you,
Matthew Jackson

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