Dave McGary (sculptor) (1958-2013)

Dave McGary (sculptor) (1958-2013)

Trophy Hunters (masterwork)
bronze
34 x 0 in
Price On Request
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Trophy Hunters announces a new chapter by acclaimed Master of Realism Dave McGary in depicting American Indians and the First Nations people of Canada. In this series McGary turns for a second time to the Woodland Tribes of the American Northeast and Southern Quebec, tribes whose rich histories include the critical roles they played in those regions during the mid-18th century. Only McGary’s important piece "Emergence of the Chief" has portrayed the tribes of this region, who differ greatly – from their customs to their manner of dress — from American’s Southwestern tribes and those of the Upper Plains, the Upper Midwest and the Mountain regions. "Emergence of the Chief" focused on the Mohawk Nation, while also paying homage to the other four Nations that made up the original Iroquois Confederation: the Cayuga, the Onadaga, the Oneida and the Seneca. "Trophy Hunters" again portrays members of the Mohawk Nation, but not in grand ceremony as in "Emergence of the Chief." Rather, the sculpture captures a moment in time as two Mohawk braves look into the early morning light, not knowing what the day would bring. Normally woodland hunters, today they are warriors and will seek trophies of war. "Trophy Hunters" depicts September 8, 1755, the day the British mounted the Battle of Lake George as part of an overall campaign to keep the French from advancing farther into New York Province and ultimately expel them from North America in the early stages of the French and Indian War. Indians of various tribes were brought into the war as scouts and warriors, some aligned with the British and some with the French. The British forces were under the command of Major-General William Johnson, and consisted of British regulars, colonial militiamen and British-allied Mohawks. On the French side, Jean Erdman Baron de Dieskau commanded a force of French regular grenadiers, Canadian militiamen and French-allied Indians – both Caughnawaga members of the Abenaki tribe in that region. The day unfolded into a series of brutal and bloody engagements. It began with a French ambush in which British forces, including their allied Mohawks, were engulfed in a blaze of enemy musket fire and killed in such numbers that historians refer to it as "The Bloody Morning Scout." As Dieskau then planned his attack on William Johnson’s encampment, he was confronted by the shaken and demoralized Caughnawaga Mohawks who, after killing their own brethren in the earlier ambush, refused to fight further; the Abenakis and eventually the Canadians also refused. Advancing with only his French grenadiers, Dieskau was caught in the open where he and his forces were felled row-by-row by British canons filled with grapeshot. The day ended with one more ambush when the British attacked what some presume were retreating French, but who others believe were in fact the Caughnawaga Mohawk, Abenaki and Canadians who had refused to continue fighting with Dieskau. The many dead were thrown into a pool, which to this day is known as "Bloody Pond." Of the Indians who withdrew from battle that day to avoid any further bloodshed between tribesmen, some never fought again during the ensuing years of the war. The only way to tell if these Mohawks were aligned with the French or with the British is their weaponry. The British forces carried a legendary and superior Land Pattern Musket colloquially known as the "Brown Bess," a flintlock barrel-loaded long gun ultimately used by land forces of the British Empire for over 100 years. The Brown Bess, with an overall length of some 60 inches, weighed over 10 pounds and used a 69 caliber musket ball. A practiced user could fire at a rate of 3 to 4 rounds per minute, inflicting the greatest damage when fired at 50 yards but with accuracy up to 100 yards. The French weapon was far inferior and had neither the actual nor symbolic power of the Brown Bess. From this it is evident that the two Mohawks depicted in "Trophy Hunters" are fighting for the British. The standing warrior holds his Brown Bess at his side, at a height close to hi


About The Artist

Dave McGary (sculptor) (1958-2013)

"Amazing," "astounding," and "unbelievable detail," are some of the most frequent first words heard when people view renown artist Dave McGary's bronze sculptures of Native Americans.  The works are masterpieces of anatomical and historic accuracy.  They are also based upon real persons of American history.  They are collected by individuals, corporations and institutions on a worldwide basis.  
 
Dave McGary was raised on a cattle ranch in Wyoming.  His art career began early in life.  At 12, he sculpted in clay.  At 16, he received a scholarship to spend a year in Italy studying the human form and the art of bronze casting.  Shortly after his return to the U.S., Dave began working at a Santa Fe foundry, and began a friendship with a Sioux artist that contributed significantly to Dave's interest in sculpting the American Indian.  Subsequently, Dave was adopted into the Ogala Sioux tribe and given the name Wambalee Tanka, "Big Eagle." But his adopted family on the reservation are more likely to refer to him as "Big Red Ears" because of his predilection for soaking up tales of their ancestors.  A McGary bronze is a unique combination of pure American West and classic Renaissance art form of Italy.  
 
Each work contains many elements of historical authenticity, emotion, artistic skill and bronze casting technology. This special combination has been recognized through the placement of works at a wide variety of governmental and corporate locations.  Each year, Dave receives numerous requests to execute commissions -- most of which he must turn down due to his schedule and family life (he, his wife Molly and their child divide time between homes in New Mexico and Arizona).  
 
Among the permanent public installations is one that may be seen in Santa Fe's Grant Park.  The 14-foot-high work depicts Don Pedro de Peralta and his surveyor as they lay out early Santa Fe. The artist has also been exhibited in a One-man Show at the Russell Senate Rotunda in Washington D.C.   
 
Meyer Gallery is pleased to display the magnificent bronzes of renown sculptor Dave McGary.

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