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The Concealed Enemy

On view

The Concealed Enemy

Artist: George Caleb Bingham (American, 1811 - 1879)

Date: 1845
Medium: oil on canvas
Dimensions:
29 1/4 x 36 1/2 inches (74.3 x 92.7 cm)
Frame: 37 7/8 x 45 1/4 x 5 1/8 inches (96.2 x 114.9 x 13 cm)
Classification: Paintings
Credit Line: Purchase of the Nelda C. and H.J. Lutcher Stark Foundation, 1985
Object number: 31.221.1
Accession Number: 1985.3.2
DescriptionOsage warrior on bluff overlooking Missouri River.
Label Text:Bingham's image reveals to the viewer an Indian warrior who uses the landscape to hide. His position sets up a potential attack on an unseen victim. The painting, through its depiction of a fierce warrior in a wild natural setting, conveys an idea common in the nineteenth century-that Indians were "savage." That concept affected governmental policies and social practices.
Provenance: Submitted by Bingham in 1845 in American Art Union, New York; purchased by the American Art Union December 8, 1845; Awarded to James A. Hutchison, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, December 19, 1845; David Ives Bushnell, Jr. Washington, D.C. until 1946; gifted 1949 to Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard, University, Cambridge, Massachusetts; purchased through (Hirschl & Adler Galleries, Inc., New York, New York) February 1, 1985, by the Nelda C. and H.J. Lutcher Stark Foundation; accessioned to the Stark Museum of Art
Exhibitions:
  • Western Classics: Highlights from the Collection