Opening Night at the Booth Museum of Western Art

Bergsgaard at the Booth MusuemLast week was one of the highlights of my professional career with the unveiling of my sculpture, Memorare, Sand Creek 1864 at the Booth Museum of Western Art.

We had a great turnout, with 60 people in attendance (who came in a Georgia downpour) – including one couple who drove from Chattanooga to see the opening.

The evening started with filmmaker Don Vasicek, who showed an abridged version of his documentary, Ghosts of Sand Creek, to set the context of the incident. Then, Booth Executive Director Seth Hopkins and I unveiled Memorare. What a thrilling experience that was!

Following the unveiling, we were joined by Don’s colleague and researcher, Jessica Osenbrugge.  Seth then led the three of us – Don, Jessica, and myself – in a panel discussion about Sand Creek Massacre and our artistic endeavors.

My sincere thanks go out to Seth Hopkins for making the evening so special, to Don and Jessica who added important insights, and to the fine folks who attended the event.


Bergsgaard at the Booth Museum artist wall

Me adding my signature to the wall of the Booth's permanent collection artists

Right to left: Craig Bergsgaard, Jessica Osenbrugge, Don Vasicek

Right to left: Craig Bergsgaard, Jessica Osenbrugge, Don Vasicek

Me with Memorare, Sand Creek 1864 at the Booth Museum of Western Art

Me with "Memorare, Sand Creek 1864" at the Booth Museum of Western Art

“Memorare, Sand Creek 1864” Museum Opening at the Booth Museum

Sand Creek Massacre Remembered in Sculpture and Film at Georgia’s Booth Western Art Museum January 21, 2010

memorare-cast-blog1I am pleased to announce the addition of Memorare Sand Creek 1864 to the permanent collection of the prestigious Booth Museum of Western Art in Cartersville, Georgia. This is a wonderful honor to have this piece included in this fine institution.

The opening will feature the unveiling of Memorare as well as a film on the history of the Sand Creek Massacre. The film has been made by Colorado documentary filmmaker Don Vasicek – an artist who has been researching and studying this tragedy for the better part of a decade.

After the screening of the film and the unveiling of my sculpture, Don and I will participate in a panel discussion hosted by Seth Hopkins, Booth Museum Executive Director.

Memorare, Sand Creek 1864 Booth Museum Installation
Thursday, January 21, 2010
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Admission: $10; free to museum members

The Booth Western Art Museum, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is located in Cartersville, Georgia, 40 miles north of Atlanta. This 120,000 square foot Museum opened in August 2003 with main galleries featuring contemporary Western American art. The Booth houses the largest permanent exhibition space for Western art in America.

New from the Foundry: “Defiance”

Representing the Lakota sacrifice in the Battle of Little Big Horn

Western Sculpture Defiance by Craig Bergsgaard

Western Sculpture Defiance by Craig Bergsgaard

It is always exciting when a sculpture moves from a clay to a finished bronze. A finished bronze becomes part the history of the family that collects the piece. As you can imagine, this gravity is not lost on me as an artist.

I feel especially moved by this piece because of the historical significance of the event that inspired it.

My vision for this piece was sparked by a visit to the Little Bighorn Battlefield. On the actual battle site, there are inscriptions on the markers of the fallen Native Americans that read, in part: “fell here on June 25, 1876 while defending the Lakota way of life.” I developed this sculpture as a testament to the ultimate sacrifice paid by these warriors.

Defiance shows the ultimate in “Never Say Die.” By the time of the Battle of Little Big Horn, the Sioux had been deceived, suffered numerous broken treaties, and was facing the extinction of their tribal homeland. Yet, somehow, these warriors kept their dignity — and their fighting pride.

This is an edition of only nine – over half were sold during the pre-cast phase. Please let me know if you would like me to reserve one of the remaining pieces for you.
Size is 31″h x 24″w x 14″d and the price is $5,100