Prix de West® Opening Weekend events include captivating panel discussion featuring artists’ journeys as immigrants to the United States

Public event recognizes inspiration and challenges behind being an artist in nation’s premier Western art show.

OKLAHOMA CITYThe National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is pleased to announce the unexpected Finding My West panel discussion featuring Prix de West artists Francois Koch, Mian Situ, and Kent Ullberg – all immigrants to the United States – on June 8, 2018, at 10:30 a.m. The panel discussion will encapsulate what brought these artists to the United States, their experience settling into a new country, how the American West influenced their art career, who their early mentors were, and more.

Koch, Situ, and Ullberg are part of the more than 98 exhibiting artists who will display works in the 46th Prix de West. The panel discussion, moderated by Randal M. Dutra, is free and open to the public with Museum admission.

“By incorporating workshops, seminars, and demonstrations into Opening Weekend events, we hope to attract locals to this one-of-a-kind experience that is happening right in their backyard,” said Museum President and CEO Natalie Shirley. “There is truly nothing like Prix de West, and we encourage our neighbors to come see what the hype is all about!”

Koch, a Johannesburg, South Africa, native, began selling watercolor landscapes at age 15 and went on to become South Africa’s foremost landscape and wildlife painter, participating in numerous international wildlife shows. It was not until 1998 that he expanded his market into the U.S. and began participating in American exhibitions. Koch has been a Prix de West artist for 13 years and has four pieces in this year’s show.

Situ, born in southern China, earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the Guangzhou Institute of Fine Art before working as an art instructor for six years. He lived in Canada for 10 years before immigrating to the U.S. in 1998 and receiving many prestigious awards from nationally renowned museums. This year marks Situ’s second year in Prix de West, where he will display three pieces.

Ullberg, a native of Sweden, is recognized as one of the world’s foremost wildlife sculptors. He studied at the Swedish University College of Art in Stockholm and worked at museums in Germany, the Netherlands, and France before immigrating to the U.S. and calling Texas home. Ullberg has shown in Prix de West for 40 years and has three sculptures in this year’s show.

Prix de West Opening Weekend events include seminars, artist demonstrations, a live auction, master art classes, receptions, awards, an art sale, and a trunk show at The Museum Store. Reservations are required for most Prix de West Opening Weekend events; to make reservations, see a full schedule, or arrange a bid by proxy, visit nationalcowboymuseum.org/prixdewest.