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Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West offers ‘A Portrait of the American West’

Photo of new exhibition at Western Spirit
Western Spirit to offer exclusive Scott T. Baxter collection
Staff Reports | Digital Free Press

Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West, is presenting “The Gather: A Portrait of the American West” by Scott T. Baxter, which patrons say is a riveting new exhibition featuring 148 photographs from 1998 to 2023, chronicling American ranchers and cowboys — men and women — across the American west.

The exhibition runs through July 30, 2023, at Western Spirit. The 148 featured photographs will be displayed in various photographic techniques like silver gelatin, platinum/palladium, and archival pigment prints, according to a press release.

“Scott Baxter has a way of capturing the heart and soul of so many modern-day ranchers of the modern American West through the lens of his camera,” said Tricia Loscher, assistant director at Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West.

“All of the images displayed in “The Gather” celebrate a vibrant way of life and the many unique traditions that continue to this day in the West. We can’t wait to unveil this captivating exhibition.”

Scott Baxter is the author of “100 Years 100 Ranchers,” a 10-year official legacy project book for the Arizona Centennial that documents 100 long-time families who have been ranching in Arizona since 1912 or earlier. Since spring 2011, “100 Years 100 Ranchers” has been shown throughout Arizona from Terminal Four at Sky Harbor to Wickenburg’s Desert Caballeros Western Art Museum and the Tucson Museum of Art.

“I decided to take on these projects because I felt it was important to preserve with photographs the vanishing legacy of ranchers and working cowboys. I chose to work exclusively with monochromatic film because it too has a long, wonderful history,” shares Scott Baxter.

When discussing his process Baxter says, “I have always tried to do something worthwhile with my photography and I believe deeply in these photographic projects. The stories in ‘The Gather’ are stories worthy of preserving. If you find something you are passionate about, the story will come and I find it always comes out before the photograph is even made. The image is just the end result of the story.”

Western Spirit features regularly changing and permanent exhibits of Western and Native American art and artifacts, entertaining events and informative programs that bring the West’s heritage, culture and community to life. Featuring Light and Legacy: The Art and Techniques of Edward S. Curtis; Beaded Gauntlets from William P. Healey Collection; and The Railroad Opening Up the West, a model train exhibition.

Permanent exhibitions continuously on display include Canvas of Clay: Hopi Pottery Masterworks from The Allan and Judith Cooke Collection, which features 65 of the finest examples of Hopi pottery spanning six centuries, the Frankie and Howard Alper Collection of John Coleman Bronzes; and The Abe Hays Family Spirit of the West Collection, a showcase of more than 1,400 saddles, spurs, cowboy gear and other Old West objects.

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