Show Preview | Desert Caballeros Western Museum: Cowgirl Up!

Wickenburg, AZ
March 21-May 4

Ann McLeod, What Time Has Wrought, oil, 30 x 40.

Ann McLeod, What Time Has Wrought, oil, 30 x 40.

This story was featured in the March 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art March 2014 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

Since 2006, the Desert Caballeros Western Museum has been giving women artists their rightful place in western art with its annual show Cowgirl Up! Art from the Other Half of the West. The event features female artists from around the United States who create western art while challenging and redefining what “art of the West” really means.

On Friday, March 21, the ninth annual show kicks off with a sale of 75 miniature artworks and a cocktail buffet from 6 to 10 p.m. The opening-weekend events continue on Saturday at 1 p.m. with an artists’ and collectors’ forum entitled Cowgirls & Camaraderie. Later on Saturday the Bash n’ Bid Sale and artists’ awards dinner features over 200 pieces of original western work.

The weekend events come to a conclusion on Sunday. A Breakfast Quick Draw begins at 8 a.m., with artists painting from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. All Quick Draw works are then framed and auctioned at 10:45 a.m. The show remains on view at the museum until May 4. Here we introduce you to just a few of the artists participating in this year’s show.

Maura Allen uses her photography as a starting point for her mixed-media works on steel, wood, ceramic, and paper. She lays colors side by side instead of blending them in her contemporary cowboy and western ranching images. She also creates mixed-media botanicals and urban-themed works.

Shawn Cameron, Summer’s Song, oil, 14 x 20.

Shawn Cameron, Summer’s Song, oil, 14 x 20.

In her charcoal drawings, Rox Corbett tries “to capture the grace and mystery of wildlife or the feelings and responses that domesticated animals have toward us.” She is inspired by the partnerships we forge with both horses and canines.

Sally Delap-John is inspired by both her New Mexico surroundings and by the actual process of painting. “I am excited to paint en plein air,” she says. “The challenge of putting a painting together with changing light, wind, and such always adds to the energy that goes into a painting.”

Laurie J. Lee’s favorite subjects include western and ranching themes and landscapes, for which she gathers reference material by helping with cattle drives, brandings, and other western events.

Sharon Markwardt is drawn to the animals of the West, from the most reclusive wildlife
to the animals with which we share our homes. She brings these animals to life with expressive color, details, and a dose of humor.

Carol Swinney works exclusively with a palette knife to create her highly textured landscapes. “I use every part of the knife,” she says, “from the edges to the tip to the flat surfaces, to create all the textures I see in nature.” For Swinney, art is an important way of documenting our vanishing resources and the beauty of the western landscape. —Laura Rintala

contact information

Featured in the February 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art February 2014 print issue or digital download Or subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss a story!

Subscribe to Southwest Art magazine
Learn how to paint & how to draw with downloads, books, videos & more from North Light Shop
Sign up for your Southwest Art email newsletter & download a FREE ebook