The Wounded Bunkie

Following the success of Remington’s first sculpture, “The Bronco Buster,” which depicts a cowboy taming a wild horse, the artist created “The Wounded Bunkie,” an emotionally charged work in which a U.S. Cavalry soldier supports his wounded brother-in-arms. Here Remington deftly accomplishes a difficult task: rendering two figures in a moment of intense action, while realistically portraying a pair of horses in full gallop. The composition masters a delicate balancing act–only one leg of each horse touches the base. The realism of the horses’ gait was undoubtedly informed by the photographer Eadweard Muybridge’s well-known motion studies, published in the album “Animal Locomotion” in 1887. An artistic tour de force, “The Wounded Bunkie” is the most significant sculpture in the Museum’s American collection, owing not only to the composition’s raw power, but also to the fact that this is the first cast in the series, as indicated by the letter A incised on its base.

  • Copyright 1896
  • 20 3/4 x 11 x 31 in. (52.7 x 27.9 x 78.7 cm)
  • On the top of the base, left rear and facing the edges just back of the skull that lies on the ground: COPYRIGHTED BY FREDERIC REMINGTON 1896 [The letter "A" appears within the "F" of Remington's signature.] On the top of the base, right side
  • 1973.148
  • Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Harold E. Simon
  • Walstein C. Findlay, Jr., President, Findlay Galleries, Inc., Chicago, Ill.; purchased from the above by Dr. Harold E. Simon, Birmingham, Ala. (paid on installment from Sept. 13, 1960 to Jan. 26, 1962); gift of the above with his wife Regina Simon to the Birmingham Museum of Art (Oct. 17, 1973).