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Would you risk everything to make a fresh start in an uncharted land? Would you leave the places and people you love for a chance of success, regardless how slim? In nineteenth-century America, millions of intrepid souls poured into the West, ready to take this life-or-death gamble.
Colorado sculptor Craig Bergsgaard is a self-made storyteller of this chapter of American history. His bronzes capture the spirit embodied in the people who made the Wild West their home and are a monument to the independence inherent in the American psyche.
A stickler for historical correctness, Craig believes that an authentic portrayal of the past is the only way to tell his stories. He researches the West with enough zeal to rival any historian, and ensures that everything, from guns to clothing, is properly represented. Explains Craig: “If you don’t get the details right, then why bother? The sculpture simply is not the same without accuracy-’good enough’ is simply not good enough for me.”
This understanding the era’s minutiae has galvanized Craig’s vision of the people who braved the hostile, often lawless, region. “It was all about survival,” he says. “I make sure the faces of all my subjects reflect the extreme challenges of the life: vulnerability, raw emotion, defiance.”
Craig personally understands the siren call of the West. In the 1980′s, he left his home state of Minnesota to create a new life in Colorado. The sculptor lives with his wife JoAnn, dog Bodhi, and cat Kiya in Windsor, Colorado, near the artist enclave of Loveland. Craig also maintains a studio presence in Arizona from January through March during the annual Arizona Fine Art Expo in Scottsdale.