Synopses & Reviews
Winner of the American Horse Publication's Best Equine Book Award of the Year (2004)
Finalist for the 2005 Ben Franklin Award
Spanning time and technique, THE ART OF THE WESTERN SADDLE is a celebration and visual feast of the graceful artistry of the western saddler and his craft. Filled with detailed photographs and illustrations, this book celebrates the saddle as a decorative hallmark of subtle beauty while fulfilling the utility of its principal purpose. The ability for early man to domesticate and ride the horse created the rapid advancement of man's capability to travel and explore. The saddle-the epitome of form following function-evolved to meet the utilitarian needs of the rider and his tasks, be they work or pleasure.
Illustrated with historic and contemporary examples of saddle style and decoration, THE ART OF THE WESTERN SADDLE highlights the work of makers such as Visalia Stock Saddle Company, Meana, Miles City Saddlery, Porter, Hamley, Edward H. Bohlin, McCabes, and Keyston Bros., along with contemporary makers such as Chas Weldon, Dale Harwood, Chuck Stormes, Don Butler, Chuck Treon, Jeremiah Watt, and many others. Many saddles of the stars are featured from the golden age of the Hollywood Western; these include outfits belonging to the Lone Ranger, Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, Barbara Stanwyck, Ken Maynard, and Buck Jones.
THE ART OF THE WESTERN SADDLE also provides a look at the many exquisite and unpublished examples of the finest in silver and gold overlay and filigree saddle silver created by the West's preeminent metalsmiths. Featuring 300 photographs, this volume is an absolute must for all equestrians, as well as for collectors and admirers of this unique and totally American craft.
"...incredible photographs...you'll find yourself looking at this coffee-table book again and again, and discovering something new every time."--Horse & Rider
"The book fully captures the mythic qulity of this universal horseperson's tool."--True West
An elegant look at the evolution of saddle design and decoration, lushly illustrated with more than 300 full color photographs and drawings.
About the Author
Bill Reynolds is the associate publisher of Cowboys & Indians magazine. He wrote The Cowboy Hat Book and coauthored The Faraway Horses and Believe: A Horseman's Journey with Montana horseman Buck Brannaman.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Grace of Tradition (1) Origins (2) The Cow and Horse Culture (3) The Beginnings of Embellishment (4) Hollywood Horseback (5) A Settled West (6) The Saddle Renaissance (7) The Best of the Best, Old and New (8) A Thank-you to the Horses (9) Appendix: Resources (10) Glossary