Alexander Phimister Proctor1860 - 1950
Born: September 27, 1860, Bozanquit, Ontario
Died: September, 1950
As a young boy, Alexander Phimister Proctor and his family traveled throughout the American West, eventually settling in Denver. He worked as a cowboy, staked homestead and mining claims, and served as a deputy in the lawless mining region of Colorado. Proctor hunted throughout the West with his horses and dogs, continually sketching animals and western subjects. In 1885, his desire for formal artistic training led him to New York to study at the National Academy of Design and the Art Students League. At that time, he created his first bronze statues of a fawn, a bear cub, a cub and rabbit, and a stalking panther. He also produced sculptures for the Chicago World's Fair in 1892 and 1893. In 1895, Proctor won the Rinehart Scholarship, which enabled him to join the active sculpting community in Paris, France.
Proctor is primarily known for his monumental sculptures of Native Americans and wildlife that now reside in museums, public parks, and governmental sites across North America, including the State Capital Grounds in Salem, Oregon, the Civic Center in Denver, Colorado, and the A. Phimister Proctor Museum near Seattle, Washington. Throughout his life, Proctor completed many commissions, including bronze Buffalo Heads for the Arlington Cemetery Bridge, Bison for the Q Street Bridge in Washington, DC, and a representation of Theodore Roosevelt as Rough Rider. At age 80, he completed a commission for one of his last and finest creations, Monument to the Mustangs, which stands before the University of Texas Memorial Museum in Austin.
Proctor's Prairie Monarch is central to the Bison Gallery of the National Museum of Wildlife Art. Being the only bronze in the museum that is "free to touch," this bison sculpture is always a visitor favorite. Proctor's work is also recognized in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Portland Museum of Art, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, and the Gilcrease Museum.