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The Force of Nature Humbles All Men

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From the Original Painting in the Permanent Collection of the Autry National Center of the American West (Formerly the Autry Museum of Western Heritage

This painting is about the truly awesome force of nature and how the sight of such power affects people, Terpning says. The spring snow melt from a severe winter has created an abundance of water in the rivers and creeks which have in turn created a dramatic, tumbling flood and waterfalls. Two of the men in the painting face the viewer, to suggest that there is far more to see outside the edge of the canvas.

The setting is not a specific location, but rather a composite of many sites and rivers. I wanted to create a place that native people might have passed through countless times, but in this instance, a group of Blackfoot men have stopped in awe before the roaring power of nature.

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