Walter Piehl, Jr.

"I like paradox, contradiction, color, lines and putting on paint-but not necessarily in that order." -Walter Piehl, Jr.

Airwolf   Acrylic, 46x34 Candle Time    Acrylic, 36x46
Handshaking    Acrylic, 46x36 Red Riving Handshaking   Acrylic, 60x48


The 'sweetheart of the rodeo' series began several years ago. It has since gone through many technical and stylistic changes although the concept for the work has remained constant. The series is dedicated to the bucking horse, who I see as the real sweetheart of the rodeo. The heart images reinforce the conviction while providing a foil and counterbalance to the idea of rodeo as subject. My intent is to address the action and energy of the horse and rider in conflict, one aspect of rodeo, and present it in a contemporary painterly manner.

The 'roping' fool series pays homage to Will Rogers who starred in a movie of that name. It, and the paintings, are a tribute to those practitioners of the art of the lariat. Fancy and trick roping evolved from the everyday use of the catch rope on cattle ranches throughout Mexico and North America. Here again, the choice of color and technique are intended to communicate the action and energy of the rope spinner in an updated formalist image.

[Walter Piehl's] latest works baffle the eye with agitated motion and color. Done in sweeping lines that splash, dash and splatter across the canvas, the saddle broncs, ropers and rodeo competitors tremble like ghost images panned by a camera. With scrawls that ignore detail, Piehl captures the essence of rodeo action. -Vicki Voskuil, Bismarck Tribune