The R.W. Norton Art Gallery houses an exceptional collection of art spanning more than four millennia. Since its opening in 1966, the museum has become particularly well-known around the country for its impressive collections of works by those titans of western art, Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell. The R.W. Norton Art Gallery is a teaching museum that uses the art to encourage community participation in thoughtful interpretations and discussions.
In the early 1920's, Richard W. Norton (1886-1940) became one of the discoverers of the Rodessa Oil Field in north Louisiana. Over time, Mr. Norton's wife and son began to amass a significant collection of fine art. In 1946, to honor Mr. Norton and for the benefit of the community, Richard W. Norton, Jr. (1919-1974) and his mother, Mrs. Richard W. Norton (1886-1975) created the R.W. Norton Art Foundation. In turn, the Foundation eventually established the R.W. Norton Art Gallery, basing its initial collection upon donations from the acquisitions of the Nortons. Today, due to the on-going efforts of the Board of Control and the Foundation's work, the R.W. Norton Art Gallery's offerings continue to expand, grow, and contribute to their community.
Born in England, Moran came to America as a child. Originally trained as a lithographer, he became one of the key artists of the later phase of the Hudson River School; his paintings of Yellowstone were shown to Congress to bolster the case for a National Parks system. This style of painting using only black and white pigments is known as grisaille. Painters used it to show off their drafting abilities since color could not be used to disguise inaccuracies, but also because black-and-white works were easier to transfer to a printing medium for the proliferation of new magazines and journals that paid them for their illustrations.