An afternoon of bathing by Cheyenne and their horses is cut short by a sound that can only mean trouble and a fast ride back to their endangered village. “The Sound of a Distant Bugle” is one of Howard Terpning’s most important paintings of the past decade. Now this award-winning work of art is available as an extremely limited Museum Edition Fine Art Canvas.
While attending a gathering at the Big Horn River, Terpning observed a group of young Native men charging into the river on horseback. Terpning visualized them as a party of Cheyenne warriors cooling off on a hot day as they look out for potential danger.
Its intricate design and complex composition are the hallmarks of Terpning’s masterful style. It was a challenge for Howard to create the important reflections in the river while showing the water’s swift flow. He placed figures in different depths to give a variety to their groupings, from the submerged Native on the left, to the yellow shirt on the right. Note also the blood red colors in the center and the cavalry hat. The two central Indians drive home the immediate sense of alarm to the viewer.
The painting won the 2010 Thomas Moran Memorial Award for Painting at the Masters of the American West Fine Art Exhibition at the Autry National Center in Los Angeles.