Posted by: melinda4 | November 27, 2009

“Ghosts of Sand Creek”

“Bloody Sand Creek Massacre Presented in Sculpture and Film at Georgia’s Booth Museum”


Museum hosts sculptor Craig Bergsgaard and award-winning writer/filmmaker Donald L. Vasicek to share artistic interpretations of 1864 incident

On January 21, 2010, the Booth Museum will host an opening featuring sculptor Craig Bergsgaard and award-winning writer/filmmaker Donald  L. Vasicek, two Colorado artists who independently chose to portray the tragic events of an 1864 skirmish between the United States and the Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes on Sand Creek near Eads, Colorado.

Bloody Sand Creek

The confrontation, now known as the Sand Creek Massacre, was responsible for the loss of life of over 400 Native Americans, mostly women, small children, mentally- and physically-challenged, and tribal elders. Accounts of the incident reveal that the Cheyenne and Arapaho were unprovoked and virtually unarmed at the time of the attack.

Museum Program

Bergsgaard and Vasicek will be on hand at the Booth Museum for a screening of an abridged version of Vasicek’s film, followed by an unveiling of Bergsgaard’s sculpture Memorare, Sand Creek 1864. Afterward, museum director Seth Hopkins will moderate a panel discussion with the two artists.


Even today, a discussion of Sand Creek yields as many questions as answers. One topic commonly encountered is the controversy inherent in characterizing a United States military battle as a “massacre.” Both artists are circumspect on the issue, freely admitting that their artistic interpretation is an opinion meant to inspire discussion and increased perception.
“My thoughts on Sand Creek are not the final word on the tragedy; it is only one perspective of five differing views I’ve encountered during my research,” says Vasicek. “But however you characterize the events of that day 145 years ago, I hope my film will act as a gateway to conversations about how we as humans can treat each other with greater understanding and respect.  We will learn how from the Cheyenne and Arapaho descendants of Sand Creek, who power the film’s story via their oral histories.”
Bergsgaard concurs. “Although I personally find it hard to see Sand Creek as anything but a tremendous wrong perpetrated against the Cheyenne and Arapaho people, my goal is not evangelize,” the sculptor says. “I want my sculpture to increase awareness – and to prevent the further tragedy of forgetting what we have learned as a nation.”

Museum Program Details

Booth Museum Sculpture Unveiling and Panel Discussion with Craig Bergsgaard and Donald L. Vasicek
Thursday, January 21, 2010
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Admission: $10; free to museum members

About the Booth Museum

The Booth Western Art Museum is one of the leading authorities on Western art. Associated with the Smithsonian Institution, this 80,000 square foot Museum opened in August 2003 with main galleries featuring contemporary Western American art. Other galleries feature Civil War art, Presidential portraits and letters, Western movie posters, and Western illustration. Sagebrush Ranch is an interactive gallery where children of all ages can learn about art and Western America.

The Museum’s Special Exhibit Gallery hosts three to five temporary exhibits per year.
About Craig Bergsgaard
Craig Bergsgaard is a self-taught sculptor, who began creating bronzes in 1990 after decades of creating custom handmade furniture. A native of Minnesota, today Craig and his wife JoAnn make their home near the artist enclave of Loveland, Colorado. He also maintains a studio presence annually in Scottsdale from January through March.
Craig has participated in over 100 juried art shows and exhibits, and his work is installed in Castle Rock, Colorado; Fountain Hills, Arizona; Spring Grove, Minnesota; and Rochester, Minnesota.

About Donald l. Vasicek

Donald L. Vasicek, owner of Olympus Films+, LLC, is in the process of securing funds to develop a feature length documentary on the Sand Creek Massacre titled, “Ghosts of Sand Creek” to use as a rollout film to attract studios to make a feature film about the Sand Creek Massacre. The full-length film will be narrated by actor Peter Coyote (“E.T”, “Erin Brokovich”), Academy Award winner Richard Lerner (“A Story of Healing”), director of photography, and five Emmy-award winners have also agreed to work on the project.
Don is a writer, screenwriter, director, producer and actor. His credits include “Warriors of Virtue,” “Die Hard II”, “Faces”, “Father Dowling”, “The Mystery Crash of Flight 1501”, ‘Born to Win.”

Contact Information:
Donald L. Vasicek
Olympus Films+, LLC

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