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Terry Redlin Art
Artist Terry Redlin is
truly an artist of the people, drawing
his strength from the American heartland and
sharing a vision that resonates across the country.|
Few artists can rival the standards of excellence achieved by Master Artist
Terry Redlin over the past 20 years. He is truly one of the country's most widely
collected painters of wildlife and Americana.
For eight consecutive years, 1991 through
1998, Redlin has been named America's most popular artist in annual gallery surveys
conducted by U.S. Art magazine. His induction into U.S. Art's Hall of Fame in 1992 followed
the magazine's poll of 900 galleries nationwide which, that year, placed five of Redlin's
limited editions in the top 11 in popularity. Over the life of the poll, 30 prints have
been included in that list. His use of earthy colors, blazing sunrises and sunsets and
nostalgic themes are often cited as the reasons for his immense popularity.
Redlin's interest in out-of-doors themes can be traced to his childhood in Watertown,
South Dakota. A motorcycle accident ended his dream of becoming a forest ranger, and he
opted to pursue a career in the graphic arts. He earned a degree from the St. Paul School
of Associated Arts and spent 25 years working in commercial art as a layout artist, graphic
designer, illustrator and art director. In his leisure time, he researched wildlife subjects
In 1977, at the age of 40, Redlin burst onto the wildlife scene when his painting "Winter Snows"
appeared on the cover of The Farmer magazine. By 1979, demand for his work had become so great
that he left is art directing career to concentrate on painting wildlife.
Since then, Redlin's meteoric rise has been unparalleled in the field of contemporary wildlife art.
In 1981 and 1984, he won the Minnesota Duck Stamp competition, and in 1982, the Minnesota Trout
Stamp contest. He also placed second that year in the Federal Duck Stamp Competition. He has been
honored as Artist of the Year for Ducks Unlimited (National and Minnesota), and as Conservationist
of the Year-Magnum Donor by the Minnesota Waterfowl Association for his gifts of entire print
collections. The National Association of Limited Edition dealers has three times presented him
with the "Lithograph of the Year" award for excellence in the medium.
In 1985, Redlin added an entirely new artistic direction, limited edition collector plates. To date,
he has released more then 30 edition, many of which are now available only on the secondary market.
In addition to fine art and collector plates, Redlin's images also appear in a variety of collectibles
and decorative accessories. Cabins, homes and church sculptures adopted from some of his most
popular art prints join music and keepsake boxes, steins and ornaments in collectors' displays.
In 1987, Redlin began exploring his interest in Americana subjects and nostalgic scenes of yesteryear,
painting several images for his American Memories and Country Doctor Collections. Since then, his
annual Christmas prints have attracted thousands of collectors from coast to coast.
In 1992, he completed his most ambitious work to date, painting each line in the first stanza
of "America the Beautiful". All eight, which depict American life from the settling of the west
to the present day, were released as limited edition prints over a three-year period, ending in
January, 1995. The series has been showcased in art and consumer magazines nationwide, and it has
been acclaimed by thousands of collectors. Terry Redlin Paints America the Beautiful, a video
presentation produced by Hadley House, earned a coveted Telly Award in the 1993 national competition.
Terry Redlin's "America the Beautiful" is a series of eight dramatic paintings inspired
by musical images from one of our beloved national hymns.
"The idea first occurred to me almost ten years ago," Terry Redlin remembers. "Like most
Americans, I am moved by the words and music of 'America the Beautiful'. It was part of
my emotional growing up. It captured, in so many ways, how we as people
"The thought of attempting to portray these feelings in paintings was intimidating, and
I moved on to other projects. But my son, Chuck, and the rest of my family continued to
encourage me. Eventually I decided, 'why not try?' So I began to paint what I saw as
the essence of the eight lines from the first stanza."
O Beautiful, For Spacious Skies
For Amber Waves of Grain
For Purple Mountains Majesty
Above the Fruited Plain
God Shed His Grace on Thee
And Crown Thy Good with Brotherhood
From Sea to Shining Sea
Terry Redlin's "America the Beautiful" series chronologically traces the development of our
country. Each of the eight paintings represents progressive stages of this story, reminding
us of the accomplishments of our ancestors in the building of this great land. It begins
in the 1800's as the pioneers struggled west, breaking the sod and building their farms
and small towns. The series ends in a contemporary times after a dramatic journey across
a landscape that is uniquely American.
These beautiful paintings share four common artistic elements. Viewers will note in each
image a young boy, a young girl, a dog, and of course, the ever present wildlife. These
players change roles in the developing drama, but always in the context of Mr. Redlin's unique
"romantic-realistic" approach to his art.
"This has been a long and challenging project," Mr. Redlin commented on this series'
completion. "I mean it to be a tribute to a country I love dearly and that has treated me
so well. I hope my effort is worthy of the subject."
Terry Redlin and the poet who first used these words share an intense and personal vision of
their country. America is seen as a land big enough and dynamic enough to hold grand
opportunities and challenging expectations. And both artists created, in their own way, an
impressive body of work documenting this vision. America, they inform us, is a place for
the imagination to soar.
This series of eight "America the Beautiful" paintings, like all of Mr. Redlin's art, is a
visual account of his distinctive world view. It flows from deep within the artist and
represents one man's tribute to ideas and values that continue to resonate clearly for so
Redlin's immense popularity can also be measured in the success of his book, Opening Windows to the Wild,
The Art of Terry Redlin." In its sixth printing, the book details his paintings, pencil sketches and
biography. Always the perfectionist, he personally supervised the printing and production of this important
project. A critical as well as a commercial success, the book was a Certificate of merit winner at the
prestigious Printing Industries of America competition in 1988. His second book, Terry Redlin, Master
of Memories, was released in 1997 and was recently voted Best Art Book by those galleries polled for
the U.S. Art survey.
Terry Redlin derives the most satisfaction from his conservation work. Over the 17 year period
from 1981 to 1997, his donations to Ducks Unlimited raised more than $28 million, setting an all-time
record in art sales for wetland conservation projects. By his own estimate, he has donated several
million dollars of art to other nonprofit conservation organizations.
Redlin's most compelling project is the construction of the museum to house his original art in Watertown,
South Dakota, where he now resides. The Redlin Art Center, which includes a regional tourism office,
Digistar planetarium and state-of-the-art teleconferencing center, opened in the summer of 1997 and
has seen more than 850,000 visitors since June 1997.
As human observers, we easily associate ourselves
with such imagery and sense how it is that Mr.
Redlin's art finds itself at the center of a broad
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