Featured Artwork: Krystii Melaine

"Rascals, Rebels, and Rogues" by Krystii Melaine

“Rascals, Rebels, and Rogues”

Oil on linen panel

32 x 46 in.

‘Rascals, Rebels and Rogues’ is a portrait of five men on the Western frontier in the 19th century. They are buffalo hunters, fur trappers, gold miners, traders and entrepreneurs. They are tough, resilient, resourceful and adventurous. Each man headed west to find his fortune in a new land full of opportunities, to make something of himself, or perhaps to escape a past he’d rather forget. These are the sort of characters who shaped the American West of legend and myth, creating the stories and the spirit of the West that fascinates me and many others today.

My models are all mountain men at heart, living the life they portray, making their own clothing and gear, and recreating the frontier life to educate others. I imagine them meeting at a Rendezvous after a hard year in the wilderness, gathering to tell their stories, share information, and enjoy some company. If a photographer had been present, you can be sure they would have stood just like this to have their photo taken. As a portrait painter, I couldn’t resist the chance to paint five different characters in one big painting, capturing them as a group of friends for posterity.

Rascals, Rebels and Rogues will be exhibited at Masters of the American West at the Autry Museum of the American West, Los Angeles, California, from February 11 to March 26, 2017. For details and tickets go to theautry.org/exhibitions/masters-american-west



Born in Victoria, Australia, Krystii Melaine announced at age four that she was going to be an artist, won her first art competition at seven, and was selling paintings by the age of fourteen. Following University studies in painting and drawing, Krystii enjoyed a successful career as a fashion designer specializing in bridal and evening gowns.

Returning to her lifelong passion for painting, she undertook five years of atelier study in traditional tonal realism focusing on portraiture. With her fascination for people and animals, Krystii found inspiration in the Native Americans, cowboys, pioneers and wildlife of the American West. In 2010 she and her husband moved from Australia to Spokane, Washington, to be closer to her favorite Western subjects. Using the rich colors and tones of oil paint in a realistic, painterly style, Krystii portrays the people who shaped the West in the past and who continue its traditions today. Through intimate portraits she explores the essence of each individual, expressing details of their lives and hinting at those things we may never fully understand. Rather than the multi-figure narratives that are common in Western art today, Krystii prefers a quieter, more thoughtful and artistic approach. She paints poetry, not journalism.

Krystii’s oil paintings are regularly featured in major museum exhibitions including Masters of the American West, Quest for the West, Cowgirl Up, Night of Artists, and The Buffalo Bill Art Show. She has 21 paintings in permanent museum collections, continues to win numerous awards, and features in many magazine articles.

Krystii is represented by Mountain Trails Galleries in Jackson, Wyoming, Park City, Utah, and Sedona, Arizona, The Broadmoor Galleries in Colorado Springs, Colorado, Going to the Sun Gallery in Whitefish, Montana, Big Horn Galleries in Cody, Wyoming, and Coeur d’Alene Gallery in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She is a Master Signature Member of the American Women Artists and a member of the Portrait Society of America.


Recent Awards

American Women Artists – Visitor’s Choice Award 2016.

Quest for the West, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art – Patron’s Choice Award 2016 & 2015.
Buffalo Bill Art Show & Sale, Buffalo Bill Center of the West – Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine Award 2015.

American Women Artists – Friends of Western Art Award 2015.

Portrait Society of America – First Merit Award, Members Only Competition-Commissioned Portrait 2014.

Cowgirl Up!, Desert Caballeros Western Museum – First Prize Two-Dimensional on Canvas 2012.

Cowgirl Up!, Desert Caballeros Western Museum – Artist’s Choice Award 2012.

Portrait Society of America – Honorable Mention, Members Only Competition-Outside the Box, & Best Portfolio 2012.

Masters of the American West, Autry National Center – Award of Merit 2011.
Scottsdale Salon, Legacy Galleries – Western Award 2011.

Cowgirl Up!, Desert Caballeros Western Museum – First Prize 2 Dimensional 2009.

Heart of the West, National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame – Best of Show 2008.

Buffalo Bill Art Show & Sale – Painting Award 2004.

Arts For The Parks – Award Of Merit: Bird 2002.
NatureWorks Wildlife Art Show – Best of Show 2011,06,02,01, Miniature Award & Best Body of Work 2000.

Select Museum and Corporate Collections

Booth Western Art Museum, Cartersville, Georgia USA.

Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, Wausau, Wisconsin USA.

Pearce Museum, Corsicana, Texas USA.

Bennington Center For The Arts, Bennington, Vermont USA.

Desert Caballeros Western Museum, Wickenburg, Arizona USA.

George Lucas Collection, California, USA.

Royal Australian Armoured Corps Memorial and Army Tank Museum, Puckapunyal, Vic, Australia.

Royal Australian Air Force, Australian Command and Staff College, Weston Creek, ACT, Australia.

Royal Australian Navy, Australian Command and Staff College, Weston Creek, ACT, Australia.

Recent exhibitions

“Masters of the American West” – Los Angeles, California, annually from 2007.

“Quest for the West”, Indianapolis, Indiana, annually from 2010, and 2006.

“Buffalo Bill Art Show & Sale” – Cody, Wyoming, annually from 2003.

“Cowgirl Up!” – Wickenburg, Arizona, annually from 2008.

American Women Artists, 2016, 2015. Featured Artist 2014 at Booth Western Art Museum.

“Night of Artists” – Briscoe Western Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas, annually from 2008.

“American Miniatures” – Settlers West Galleries, Tucson, Arizona, annually from 2010

“Miniatures by the Lake” – Coeur d’Alene Fine Art Gallery, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, annually from 2010.

“Miniature Masterpieces”, The Phippen Museum, Prescott, Arizona, annually from 2011

“The Russell” – C.M. Russell Museum, Great Falls, Montana, annually from 2010 to 2015.

“Western Visions – Wild 100”, National Museum of Wildlife Art, Jackson, Wyoming, annually from 2011 to 2015.

“A Timeless Legacy – Women Artists of Glacier National Park”, Hockaday Museum of Art, Kalispell, Montana, 2017, 2016.


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