In celebration of this holiday season, the staff in the Whitney would like to share a selection of holiday greetings from a few of our beloved artists. Sprinkled with humor, well wishes, and historical significance, these works exemplify western art. Enjoy the art, but more importantly, enjoy the holiday season.
Charles M. Russell imbues his Christmas card with humor in an illustration depicting Santa Claus and a cowboy. In the process of pulling a sock from his bag, Santa Claus is startled as the cowboy holds him at gunpoint. As the cowboy stands bare foot, it is presumed Santa is giving him socks for Christmas. In typical Russell fashion, the outcome of the scene is left up to the viewer to decide.
W.H.D. Koerner illustrated this holiday card with his family trekking through the snow after collecting a tree for their holiday season. Wishing the recipient good wishes, a merry Christmas, and a happy New Year, Koerner signs the card as 1, 2, 3, 4 Koerners, signifying family as an important part of their holiday celebration.
William Henry Jackson’s painting depicts a man and horse galloping through the cold, winter landscape. Titled Christmas of Pony Express Days, Jackson illustrates a pony express rider blowing his horn, signifying to a nearby town the mail has arrived. Through good and bad weather, Jackson demonstrates the pony express pushes forward to ensure everyone receives well wishes and their packages for Christmas.
The holiday season is a time for celebration and giving, and a time to spend with loved ones. Gather around the fireplace, sing carols, kick up your feet, watch your favorite holiday movies, and sip some hot cocoa.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from our family to yours.