The detail of Jay Contway's sculptures make them highly desirable collectors items.

Cowboy auction in Montana will give you a taste of the West

United Country Shobe Auction & Realty in Lewistown, Montana, is hosting an auction on May 31 that features over 300 lots of the finest Western art and memorabilia. While iCollector hosts a number of such antique auctions throughout the year, this one stands out for including a large selection of Western and Native American art. The auction includes 20 bronzes by celebrated sculptor Jay Contway along with several sketches by Will James and many Plains Indian artifacts and Western gear, firearms and collectibles. Be sure to browse these lots as they are likely to be of great interest to many a collector or Western enthusiast.

Jay Contway bronze sculptures
Jay Contway is a living sculptor whose work depicts the scenes and daily life of the American West. This Montana auction features a wide selection of bronze sculptures as well as watercolor paintings. Some of the most unique and interesting lots include a set of two bronze steer heads (lot #64). These bronze heads are mounted in the style of taxidermy trophies but are made entirely out of bronze. They would look fantastic adorning either side of a fireplace in the family living room. The piece titled "A Wreck Coming" depicts a rider on a horse that is jumping over a bull (lot #145). This is a notable piece for its ability to depict action and movement in a still, bronze sculpture. Meanwhile, the sculpture titled "I'll Sing You A Song" displays the gentler side of the cowboy persona (lot #178). The piece depicts an old man singing a song and playing guitar for a young boy.

The work of Will James
Will James was noted not only for his fantastic sketches of western scenes, but also his writings, which depicted life on the range. Several first-edition books of his will be available at this auction, including "Lone Cowboy" (lot #1), "Scorpion" (lot #2), "Home Ranch" (lot #3) and "Three Mustangers" (lot #4). Those more interested in the man's work in visual art will be delighted to see the wide range of sketches and drawings that are available. The pencil drawing "Range Blood" is one of the most valuable items from the artist to be put up for auction (lot #125). Meanwhile, the pen-and-ink "Horse" and "Horse Loping Away" (lot #239) are some of the best examples of the artist's proficiency at drawing horses.

Be sure to check out iCollector for a full listing of all the available lots.