George Catlin and His Indian Gallery: Smithsonian American Art Museum by Brian W. Dippie, George Catlin, George Gurney (Hardback, 2002)

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In 1832, George Catlin-showman, entrepreneur, and artist-made the first of four trips into Indian country, painting as he went, in a wonderfully spontaneous, if somewhat naive style. His ambition was to paint every tribe. He fell short. But what he did achieve, and the subject of this splendid volume, is a remarkable look into the faces and daily activities of Native Americans before their lands and their numbers were so radically diminished. And while Catlin was clearly influenced by the idea that Indians were Noble Savages (rapidly acquiring the vices of the white man while losing their "savage" virtues), his passion for his work is evidence of a profound respect and affection for his subjects, clearly demonstrated in this magnificent book.