Art in the West Celebrates Unique Perspectives on our Region

(Artwork above: Sacred Lands by Bart Walker)

The High Desert Museum is sharing an extraordinary collection of work by artists from across the West in its annual Art in the West exhibition and silent auction. This year’s juried, invitation-only exhibition features 76 works by 46 artists.

“The artwork featured in Art in the West showcases the inventive and varied ways in which artists respond to the landscapes, history, people and wildlife of the High Desert,” said Andries Fourie, Museum curator of art and community engagement. “The exhibition gives Museum visitors the opportunity to view the rugged splendor and unique stories of the West through the eyes of its most creative residents.”

The exhibition and silent auction opened on Friday, July 27. Silent bidding continues until August 25, and there is also the opportunity to purchase artwork outright.

“We’re extremely grateful for the regionally and nationally acclaimed artists who submitted pieces for jury consideration and are pleased to present this exceptional collection of works,” said Museum Executive Director Dana Whitelaw, Ph.D. “Each year, this exhibition showcases an inspiring range of artists’ interpretations of the stories of the West, from reflections on culture to the uniqueness of the landscape.”

This year’s Curator’s Choice Award was presented to Ben Pease, from the Crow and Northern Cheyenne Nations in southeastern Montana, for his piece “Keeper of the People.” The Jury’s Choice Award went to Utah-based artist Hadley Rampton for her piece “Vista.” These works are featured within the exhibit and available for bidding.

Art in the West culminates at the 29th annual High Desert Rendezvous, the Museum’s signature fundraising gala, on Saturday, August 25 from 5-9pm. This entertaining evening includes dinner, a hosted saloon, gambling, dancing, a raffle and live and silent. Tickets for the Rendezvous are available at

“Rendezvous is a special event for Museum members and friends to kick up their heels in celebration of the Museum, reflect on our accomplishments and support our future,” Whitelaw said. “The Museum is an amazing resource that exists thanks to our donors, sponsors, members and visitors.”

Proceeds from the Art in the West auction and the High Desert Rendezvous help support the Museum’s education programs, bringing science, art and history education to lifelong learners throughout the region.


Award: Curator’s Choice
Artist: Ben Pease
Artwork Title: Keeper of the People
Value: $1,920
Opening Bid: $1,520
Buy It Now: $3,840
Artist Bio: Ben Pease, from the Crow and Northern Cheyenne Nations in southeastern Montana, describes himself as a contemporary Native American storyteller. Ben’s narrative mixed-media paintings explore the history and culture of Native people. His work has recently been featured in the publications Fine Art Connoisseur, Mountain Living and Architecture. Ben’s work was included in the Creative Indigenous Collective group show at the Wyoming State Museum. He has also exhibited at museums throughout Montana, including the Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art in Great Falls, the Yellowstone Art Museum in Billings and the Bigfork Art & Cultural Center.

Award: Jury’s Choice
Artist: Hadley Rampton
Artwork Title: Vista
Value: $2,700
Opening Bid: $2,400
Buy It Now: $5,400
Artist Bio: Hadley Rampton is a Utah native. She received her bachelor of fine arts in painting and drawing from the University of Utah in 1999. Hadley focuses on plein air oil landscape painting with a contemporary take. She has been featured in numerous regional exhibitions. Her work can be found in private and corporate collections throughout the United States and internationally. She is currently represented by Phillips Gallery in Salt Lake City, Utah; the Torrey Gallery in Torrey, Utah; and the Abend Gallery in Denver, Colorado.

Cost for an individual ticket is $150 for members and $200 for non-members. A members couple ticket is $300 and a non-members couple ticket is $350. Lucky Horseshoe sponsorship tables for eight are $2,000, and Buckaroo sponsorship tables for 10 are $3,000.

Bob Shaw, NewsChannel 21 chief meteorologist / community affairs director, will be the evening’s MC. Greg Quiroga, auctioneer for Stellar Fundraising Auctions, Inc., will keep the bidding lively during the live auction. Caterer Tate and Tate will prepare a scrumptious dinner and The Bucklys will bring their original rock sound with its relaxed vibe to the dance floor.

A gallery guide of the exhibit artwork is available to preview on the Museum’s website at and for sale in the Museum’s store, Silver Sage Trading. Opening bids range from $100 to $5,000. Bids or outright purchases may be made in Silver Sage Trading or by phone during business hours at 541-382-4754, ext. 365, through 2:00 pm on Saturday, August 25, with final bidding occurring at the High Desert Rendezvous.

Art in the West and High Desert Rendezvous are made possible by First Interstate Bank. Art in the West is presented with support from Central Oregon Visitors Association and Sunriver Resort.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *