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Gary Morton


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We are pleased and honored to feature "A Life Less Ordinary," by respected cowboy and artist Gary Morton (garymortonart.com) as the 2016 poster art for the 15th annual Cowboy Poetry Week and as a special Cowboy Poetry Week Art Spur:

30" x 44"
@ Gary Morton, garymorton.com "A Life Less Ordinary"
A Life Less Ordinary"

We asked Gary to tell us about the painting's inspiration and he commented, "The cowboy life is never boring. Most of the West is still worked on horseback. Days are long and the weather is sometimes a challenge. These cowpunchers saddled up and rode out when daylight was just a promise on the eastern horizon. They have been in a high trot to get to the back side in order to make a drive. The cowboss is scattering the riders and each will gather cattle back to the roundup. It will require a sure footed horse and a good hand to handle the job. Many spur of the moment decisions will have to be made for a smooth works. Each day is a different experience and truly it is, 'A Life Less Ordinary.'"

He adds that the painting, "... is from the 06 Ranch in the Davis Mountains of far west Texas." One of the pictured riders is popular poet and cowboy Ray Fitzgerald.


@ Gary Morton, garymorton.com "A Life Less Ordinary" Cowboy Poetry Week 2016, CowboyPoetry.com

Previously, we were pleased to feature "A Crash of Thunder" by Gary Morton as a 2015 National Day of the Cowboy Art Spur 

© Gary Morton, www.garymortonart.com;
this painting should not be reposted or reproduced without permission
"A Crash of Thunder"

About Gary Morton

When asked for a brief bio, Gary Morton offered a characteristically humble reply: "Lives in New Mexico, cowboy and artist, Gary Morton, loves the range riding culture and lives it."

We found a more formal bio that gives a deeper look at his life and his impeccable cowboy and cowboy artist credentials:

Gary began cowboying on different ranches as a teen and ultimately became wagon boss on the historic Bell Ranch in New Mexico. The life of cowboying makes Gary more than familiar with his subjects. “I don’t just paint for myself, but to honor the working cowboy.” Gary’s paintings are realistic, accurate and his attention to detail allows him to be honest to himself and the people he paints.

He has served on many boards throughout his career. He is one of the founding directors of the Working Ranch Cowboys Association and served as Vice-President and President. He remains a WRCA Director and chairman of rules and sanctioning.

Gary has served four Governors of New Mexico in various appointments including Chairman of the New Mexico Arts Commission, Director Department of Cultural Affairs and Equestrian Facility Design Task Force.

By 2002 Gary had spent 25 years as a full-time artist when the love of the life brought him back to ranching, taking a position as manager for the CR Ranch near Las Vegas, New Mexico. Then in 2008 he was awarded the grazing lease on the Valles Caldera National Preserve where he and a cowboy crew cared for 2000 yearlings through the summer.

In 2009 he acquired the summer grazing lease on the Mescalero Apache Reservation in southern New Mexico where he and a crew cared for 4700 yearlings. In 2011 Gary has come full circle and returned to the Bell Division of Silver Spur Ranches and the Mesteno Camp country west of the Canadian River. Being able to bring both worlds together once again has proved inspirational.

Over the years he has shown his paintings in many shows, galleries, and museums throughout the country. Gary continues to create authentic paintings of the contemporary working cowboy. He has enjoyed many opportunities to create special commission works for collectors.

Gary has a body of work that reflects a life dedicated to perfecting his God-given talent and portraying the cowboy.

In 2015, Gary Morton received the New Mexico Governor's Rounders Award in recognition of his work that depicts contemporary cowboy life.

Find more at GaryMortonArt.com.





More About Gary Morton

A few places to find more about Gary Morton:


  A clip from a Vaquero Series video, Tierra Encantado, features Gary Morton. "Gary Morton is best known as cowboy artist. He gets his inspiration from handling his own cattle. We filmed him on the Mescalero Apache Reservation in New Mexico where he grazed his cattle on the high mountain meadows...."


A New Mexico PBS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jnbgUR942o with Richard Farnsworth profiles Gary Morton. "New Mexico PBS travels to Lincoln, New Mexico, where cowboy painter Gary Morton lives and paints. It is a trip back to the Old West where the poetry, music, myth and reality of the American cowboy once thrived. Actor Richard Farnsworth is our guide..."


"A Real Cowboy Artist," an article (pdf) by Tonya Ratliff-Garrison in the American Quarter Horse Journal presents Gary Morton and his art.


Gary Morton is one of the founding directors of the Working Ranch Cowboys Association (www.wrca.org). His art was the basis for its logo. Links: About Gary at the WRCA; The WRCA Logo.


The Cowboy Mind, a Facebook page by Gary Morton that is described, "This page is to explore the cowboy mind. I have been asked my whole life, what is so special and unique about this occupation? Most cowboys and buckaroos could make a living in many different ways. It might be fun to let cowboys answer the question." Like the page to follow the conversation: http://www.facebook.com/thecowboymind.




Gary Morton's Art


Below are a few sample images of Gary Morton's work. Find more about Gary Morton and his art at GaryMortonArt.com.



From Breakin Broncs To Bakin Biscuits

Cowboss Gets a Count

The Simple Pleasures of New Mexico

Sunrise on the Cathedral



© Gary Morton, www.garymortonart.com;
this painting should not be reposted or reproduced without permission
From Breakin Broncs To Bakin Biscuits"




© Gary Morton, www.garymortonart.com;
this painting should not be reposted or reproduced without permission
"Cowboss Gets a Count"

Texas cowboy, horseman, poet, and National Endowment for the Arts Heritage Fellow Joel Nelson is pictured.




© Gary Morton, www.garymortonart.com;
his painting should not be reposted or reproduced without permission.
"The Simple Pleasures of New Mexico"

This painting hangs in the New Mexico capitol building



© Gary Morton, www.garymortonart.com;
his painting should not be reposted or reproduced without permission.
"Sunrise On Cathedral"


This painting is in the collection of the Museum of the Big Bend in Alpine, Texas







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