The Briscoe Western Art Museum preserves and presents the art, history, and culture of the American West through engaging exhibitions, educational programs, and public events reflective of the region’s rich traditions and shared heritage.

The Briscoe recently announced the winners of the 2020 Night of Artists. The 2020 honorees include the following:

Briscoe Museum Purchase Award and the James Bowie Award for Sculpture: Paul Moore, “The Procession”, Bronze, 52” x 35.5” x 13”

While he is represented in the Briscoe’s permanent collection with his 2017 sculpture “When His Heart Is Down,” this is the first year double-award winner Paul Moore has participated in Night of Artists. Moore’s remarkable piece “The Procession” received great acclaim at the Prix de West Invitational Art Exhibition & Sale hosted by the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City in 2019, and as the Purchase Award, now joins the Briscoe’s permanent collection.

Paul Moore, “The Procession”, Bronze, 52” x 35.5” x 13”

Sam Houston Award for Painting: Martin Grelle, “Wolves in Blue”, Oil on linen, 40” x 36”

Well-known for his depiction of Native American subjects, Martin Grelle has participated in Night of Artists since 2016. His work is a highlight of the event each year and four of his paintings are included in the Briscoe’s collection, most notably “Gathering Storm,” featuring a group of Native Americans facing a battle as ominous clouds billow above.

Martin Grelle, “Wolves in Blue”, Oil on linen, 40” x 36”

David Crockett Award for Artists’ Choice: Brent Cotton, “Search Party”, Oil, 32” x 32”

Brent Cotton, “Search Party”, Oil, 32” x 32”

William B. Travis Award for Patrons’ Choice: Brent Cotton, “While the Iron is Hot”, Oil, 16” x 20”

First participating in Night of Artists in 2017, double-award winner Brent Cotton is known for his misty Western landscapes and stark nocturnal scenes. Though the Montana-based artist has not been with the show for long, his work has captured the attention of artists and patrons alike.

Brent Cotton, “While the Iron is Hot”, Oil, 16” x 20”

The Sam Houston and James Bowie Awards represent “Best in Show” recognition, chosen by the Briscoe’s Art Selection Committee, an anonymous panel of Western art collectors and enthusiasts who are deeply involved with the museum. The David Crockett and William B. Travis awards are selected by fellow artists and show patrons. This year’s selection process was challenging due to the global pandemic, which forced the cancellation of the Night of Artists opening festivities and the museum’s closure. After taking the exhibition and sale online, the Briscoe chose to extend the event through July 26. This year’s award winners, as well as past winners, are highlighted online.

Artist Ezra Tucker was the Honorable Mention for both the Artists’ and Patrons’ Choice Awards with his piece “Correcaminos.” A wildlife artist whose exceptional skills often make his subjects appear alive and animated, Tucker is new to Night of Artists, but not new to the Briscoe. Tucker’s work was featured in last year’s Art and the Animal exhibition.

Ezra Tucker, “Correcaminos”

The 2020 winners each receive a new award designed by sculptor Mary Ross Buchholz. The sculpture was inspired by a piece Buchholz shared in Night of Artists last year, “Patriarch of the Plains.” The piece represents the symbol of the Briscoe, the bison.

“The Night of Artists awards truly recognize the best of the best. Art is judged by style, form, composition and color, but these works go beyond that. Through the artists’ talent, each work captures a piece of the West. They tell tales that resonate today and help preserve the history that is unique to the American West,” said Michael Duchemin, President and CEO of the Briscoe Western Art Museum. “While we never anticipated opening this show virtually, then sharing it in person through the summer, the caliber of these works deserves to be celebrated again and again. It is an honor to recognize these works and share them with everyone.”

The exhibition and sale continue through July 26 at the Briscoe, with all unsold artwork available for purchase. The exhibition is open to the public with museum admission. Everyone can also view the full catalog and online gallery and purchase any work online. A list of participating artists is also available online.

Night of Artists is the largest annual fundraiser for the museum and benefits the Briscoe’s full array of exhibitions, engagement and educational programs throughout the year. The Briscoe would like to thank the Night of Artists Western Art Title Sponsors Debbie and John T. Montford and the Plum Foundation, as well as all of the event’s generous sponsors and patrons for their unwavering support. During these challenging times, the Briscoe welcomes and encourages the community to help keep the stories of the American West alive by making an online donation. Visit the Briscoe’s website at briscoemuseum.org.


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