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AMERICAN cowboy culture is proving popular with visitors to Compton Verney.

Their new American West exhibition brings the Native American's experience of the Wild West into sharp reality.

It shows how the sweeping landscape provided a sublime backdrop for Hollywood stories of a savage wilderness being conquered by the progressive and the civilised.

The scene is set with the first exhibit - a sound piece - by Alan Michelson called He(a)rd, 2005 which records the noise of buffalo stampeding.

Film posters, dime novels and billboards all record the western spectacle and moving, naive works by imprisoned American Indians are among the most compelling exhibits in the show.

There are also evocative black and white photographs - one showing the spectacle of Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West Circus in 1903 when Indian chiefs rode through Birmingham's New Street. For details call 01926 645500.

TWO new paintings worth pounds 3 million have been bought for Compton Verney to go on permanent display in the medieval German art collection.

Venus and Cupid (1525) by Lucas Cranach the Elder was bought for pounds 2,100,00 and Maria Lactans: The Virgin and Child Crowned by Angels in a Window Embrasure by Martin Schongauer was purchased for pounds 900,000.

The collection also contains paintings and sculpture from 1460 to 1650 - a time of religious upheaval in Germany and a thriving art scene.

Cranach, one of the most important German artists of the time, depicts Venus as a guardian of virtue warning the spectator of the perils of love. Schongauer uses ideas found in early paintings from the Netherlands.

BRUSH STROKES A FREE beach babies hunt inspired by the Rugby Collection painting by Percy Wyndham Lewis takes place at the Rugby Art Gallery and Museum from tomorrow until September 4. There will also be a weekend of free activities at the gallery in Little Elborow Street tomorrow and Sunday.

YOUNG people from The Gap community centre in Warwick will be mixing tracks from spaghetti westerns, Native American hip-hop, country and western and the cries of native American birds of prey for a performance called Heart of an Owl at Compton Verney tomorrow from 1pm.


COWBOYS AND INDIANS: Galloping Kiowa or Sweetwater, Southern Cheyenne Indians. Picture courtesy: Buffalo Bill Historical Centre, Cody, Wyoming. And (right) The Last War Whoop, 1855, by Arthur F Tait. Picture courtesy: Milwaukee Art Museum. By Caroline PrichardOUTRAGEOUS: American artist Kent Monkman who opened the American West exhibition at Compton Verney in true Red Indian style. He arrived on horseback wearing an American Indian-style bikini and matching handbagACQUISITIONS: The two paintings purch...
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jul 22, 2005
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