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Dogs Playing Poker Painting

All about Dogs Playing Poker Painting

by jennamiller
Dogs Playing Poker

Dogs Playing Poker Painting


The first casino opened its doors in Venice, Italy in 1638. Casinos have remained popular recreational venues for individuals from all walks of life since then. Naturally, this long history has resulted in a never-ending supply of various forms of casino artifacts and gambling antiques. There have been iconic images of celebrities at Las Vegas card tables, antique chip sets and cards that fetch fortunes, and books like The Expert at the Card Table that have been passed down down the generations.


The Dogs Playing Poker painting series was started by American artist Cassius Marcellus Coolidge, better known as C. M. Coolidge, in 1894. He created 18 trademark pieces in total, which make up the entire collection. The series features anthropomorphized dogs playing poker, smoking cigars and pipes, sipping whiskey, wearing glasses, and accumulating chips––all of which were formerly associated with American leisure and social activity (or perhaps Coolidge’s life).


  1. M. Coolidge was a clever man with inventive ideas and an entrepreneurial flair when it came to art. He was noted for his “poker-playing dogs.” He didn’t receive a formal college education, but he did attend some college business classes later in life. He was born in a small hamlet in upstate New York to Quaker parents. He took a few portrait painting lessons when he was 18 or 19, followed by an accounting course a few years later. His passion for reading led to a strong self-education. He began drawing cartoons for newspapers in his community when he was 19 years old. He wrote and illustrated a weekly newspaper column when residing in Rochester, NY, a few years later.


These pieces of art gradually garnered fame and developed a particular reputation for their distinctive and original traits over time and from one generation to the next. Dogs playing poker original painting is impressive. Coolidge’s ability to be fun with his creations–– mixed with sharp humor, attention to detail, and an exceptional aptitude for connecting to the American psyche–– resulted in his paintings being sold.


The Dogs Playing Poker series paintings were expected to sell for between $30,000 and $50,000 prior to the Dogs in Art Auction. The paintings, named A Bold Bluff and A Waterloo, sold for a total of $590,400 after multiple rounds of heated bidding, setting a new record for Coolidge’s works. The Dogs Playing Poker theme grew in popularity even more after the record-breaking sale. Original picture of dogs playing poker is available for sale online.


For good reason, the Dogs Playing Poker concept has become part of American society. These paintings depict a time when poker was only played in back rooms. The in-person version of the game is now associated with Las Vegas poker rooms such as the Bellagio, Aria, Venetian, and Wynn. These are well-known, larger-than-life places with a mix of nostalgic echoes from bygone periods and unmistakably current attitudes. Part of the allure of the paintings is that they harken back to a time when poker was a little more underground and communal. In a way, they’re time capsules.


Surprisingly, Dogs Playing Poker murals are painted on the external wall of the Gamblers General Store in Las Vegas. Because they, too, are animal lovers, the business owners adopted Coolidge’s ideas and drew inspiration from him (especially dogs). The idea was carried over to a variety of different items, including themed cards, t-shirts, and even iPhone cases. All of this has aided in the art’s integration with modern card and casino culture.


Coolidge’s works have been included in ads, movies, cartoons, and even music videos (such as Snoop Dogg’s 1993 song “What Is My Name?”). It should come as no surprise that one-of-a-kind paintings that reflect a significant aspect of American culture have grown in value over time. Keep in mind that there are many more pieces in the collection–– so keep an eye on the price to see how high the next bidder will go!


Art can be described in many ways. It can be good or bad. It can be modern, post-modern or classical. Art can even be described as inspirational. Despite the many ways there are to describe it, there is no true way to define it. Nevertheless, artists continue to express themselves through their pieces. Some will paint beautiful landscapes and water under the moonlight. Others will create abstract works of art that tell complex stories. Oddly enough, dog portrait artists can fit in both categories. Countless artists have utilized the canine essence in their work. While they have that much in common, each piece attempts to reveal something different about the world.


Dogs Playing Poker

This particular collection is the most well-known dog painting in the United States. Most people don’t know that there are actually 15 other pieces that make up the collection. In each of the 16 pieces, different breeds of dogs are sitting at a table for a card game. This classic set of portraits was created in the early twentieth century for a campaign to sell cigars. While it’s been a favorite among working-class families for years, the original paintings are far too expensive for the average person to own.


The Dog

This painting continues to be admired by artists and art lovers. It depicts a small dog looking upward as it sits behind some sort of landmass. The exact date of its creation is unknown, but it is believed to have been created some time between 1819 and 1823. The artist, Francisco Goya, used the walls in his house to create pieces that depicted intensely dark themes. Nearly 50 years after his death, this and 13 other oil paintings were transferred from the home. It is impossible to understand exactly what Goya was trying to convey, but artists generally consider this painting the first expression of Symbolism in the West.



Sir Edwin Landseer had a love for the Newfoundland breed. A local Newfoundland, Mile, was known for rescuing children from drowning in the water. In 1856, Landseer used the dog tale as an inspiration for this piece. In the painting, Mile is shown holding a small child in his paws. Landseer was able to touch hearts and minds with his work. It catapulted him into fame.


His Masters Voice

Francis Barraud became the owner of his deceased brother’s fox terrier, Nipper. Upon playing recordings of his brother’s voice, Barraud noticed Nipper’s fascination with the phonograph that played the recordings. He decided to capture the occurrence on canvas but was initially unable to sell it. However, it was eventually purchased by The Graphophone Company in 1899. The image was used on cabinets, sound recordings and electronics wherever the products were sold.


Dogs in a Kennel

William Hamilton Trood has been regarded as one of the most revered dog painters of his time. Trood’s painting is a depiction of hounds behind the gates of a kennel looking out at a robin. He is able to tell a simple story through his typical use of natural elements.


Dog portrait artists have creatively captured the essence of man’s best friend for centuries. While some are more popular than others, each piece stands firmly on its own.


Larry is a dog portrait artist in Dallas. He creates artistic interpretations of man’s best friend, capturing their unique personality and distinct features. Commission him to have your own masterpiece created and your dog’s likeness immortalized on canvas.


Much like the varying styles of poker play, there are also many styles and forms of Poker Art. With the ever-increasing popularity of poker on television, many artists have used their talents to create Poker Art to fill the demand for things Poker. If you walk into a suburban art gallery today you’re almost guaranteed to find a piece of Poker Art that reflects the current popularity of the game.


There are many talented artists that offer a wide variety of original and limited edition poker art prints. There are poker paintings that depict scenes from old poker movies to abstract works of art that feature modern-day poker celebrities.


During the recent surge in poker’s popularity, the number of artists offering poker art has exploded to the point that it is hard to decide upon which artist’s work to buy. Poker Art can range in price from fifty dollars for one of the lesser-known artists, to tens of thousands of dollars for an original Leroy Neiman.


Long before poker was socially acceptable enough to be viewed on television, there was very little mention of poker in any form of art. It was rare to see poker referred to in movies, TV shows, and almost never in the form of painted art. One of the exceptions was the classic “Dogs playing Poker”. This series of 16 oil paintings by C. M. Coolidge, featured dogs at the poker table, smoking cigars, dancing, playing baseball, and testifying in court. Of the 16 paintings, the nine of Coolidge’s paintings in which dogs are seated around a card table playing poker and smoking cigars have become the most popular.


After spending years painting dogs in human situations, in 1903 an advertising firm, Brown & Bigelow commissioned a series of 16 paintings from Coolidge to depict dogs acting like humans for cigar advertisements. On February 15, 2005, two of these paintings, A Bold Bluff and Waterloo, sold for $590,400. The auction set an auction record for Coolidge, whose previous top sale was $74,000.


In 1980 Leroy Neiman released his painting “Stud Poker”. Due to the popularity of poker, signed copies of this poker art now sell for more than the original brought at its release. Today Leroy Neiman’s popular gaming prints have included Casino, International Roulette, Chemin de Fer, Gaming Table, and Vegas Blackjack among others. In 2004, Neiman released “International Poker” which was an almost immediate sellout.


An up-and-coming artist, Darci Faulkner is widely collected and has been honored with many national awards. Darci’s series of celebrity poker art paintings combine digital technology and her experience in the traditional mediums. Reflecting an influence of the genre developed by Andy Warhol and Peter Max, her style, embraces a whole new approach of combining the image of several celebrities to capture a specific moment in time.



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