39 – World’s Largest Watercolor

By Museum of Northwest Colorado

The Museum of Northwest Colorado is known for its number of extremely rare and historically significant artifacts. In early 2021 we added one more: a spectacular mural that happens to be the world’s largest watercolor ever painted!
Measuring-in at a whopping 16’x10’, this new world-record painting greets visitors as they walk through the museum’s front doors. It dethrones the previous record of a 15’x8’ watercolor residing in the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art @massmoca
The new mural, titled “Western Reflections”, was painted in-house over 3 months in late 2020 by local artist, Israel Holloway. “I wanted to create something that represents our local heritage, connects to the museum’s Western collection and shows the power and beauty of the real, living West that still exists in Craig today,” said Holloway.
Paul Knowles, the museum’s Assistant Director, spearheaded the project. “Our goal is to be more than just a typical small-town museum, so we always tend to think big. When the idea of creating a new mural came up, the thoughts immediately centered on how to make it a truly remarkable piece,” said Knowles. “The finished piece certainly stands on its own as a stunning work of art; the fact that it’s a world-record just makes it that much sweeter”.
The model used as the main subject for the painting is Clint Chew and his horse Arrow walking in the Yampa River. The Chew family has ranching roots in both Utah and Colorado that go all the way back to the late 1800s which adds sincere authenticity to the local painting.
Be sure to set aside time to stop by the museum and experience this magnificent piece of art!