Well-known Minnesota artist William Ersland recently won first and a second place ribbons in two prestigious nationally juried shows in Wyoming and Colorado.
At the March 7 opening of the Cheyenne Frontier Days Old West Museum’s 35th Annual Western Spirit Art Show and Sale, Ersland’s long horizontal painting “Along the Trail” took a blue ribbon in the Acrylic Painting Division.
The painting portrays members of a wagon trail including of a family with a team of oxen, a single black man, and a veteran confederate soldier on horseback followed by a burro and a dog.
This is the 12th year Ersland has been accepted into this nationally juried show competition and the 3rd year that he’s won for his Western Paintings featuring cowboys, cowgirls and their horses. The show runs through April 17.
Ersland also exhibited three western paintings at the Sangre de Cristo Arts Center in Pueblo, Colorado and won a 2nd place ribbon for one of the paintings, “Harvest Moon.” This painting features a couple on horseback perhaps riding to a barn dance with a huge harvest moon dominating the background. The Show runs through mid-May.
Both shows awarded cash prizes of $500.
Ersland lives and has painted in Stillwater for 32 years.
He is well known for his paintings of equestrian sporting art from images of riders, hounds and foxes to cowboys and cowgirls and Native Americans – all on horseback. Wild horses also are a recurrent theme and in 2015 his paintings were part of the Cloud Foundation’s first show to support the work of Ginger Kathrens and her efforts to save the American wild horse.
The Long Lake Hounds, a fox hunting group in the rural twin cities western suburbs, have been an exciting source of inspiration and he has both ridden to and followed their hunts. Also particularly inspiring are the local county rodeos throughout the summer months.
Ersland’s art has been featured in nationally juried shows throughout the western United States. His paintings are represented in two galleries. The Chisholm Gallery in Wellington, Florida which exhibits his fox hunting, polo and classical sporting art. The Tracy Miller Gallery in Manitou Springs, Colorado exhibits his “Cowboy Art” including wild horses and rodeo paintings.
More of William’s work can be seen at www.williamersland.com.
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