James Hautman: Put His Stamp on the Nation

CHASKA, Minn. (AP) — A Minnesota artist has won the 2010 Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest for the fourth time. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Saturday that James Hautman of Chaska has been named the winner. He also won in 1989, 1994 and 1998. The winning painting shows a pair of white-fronted geese standing in a marsh under gray skies. The artwork will be made into the 2011-2012 Federal Duck Stamp, which goes on sale next summer. The stamp sells for $15, and raises about $25 million each year toward conserving wetlands.

In the acclaimed black comedy thriller Fargo (Coen, 1996), the ending scene tracks police officer “Marge Gunderson,” as she crawls into bed with her husband “Norm.” As they watch TV, Norm shares that his artwork won an appearance on the 3-cent stamp, but he remarks, “Hautman’s blue-winged teal got the 29-cent.” In that instance, Norm joined the scores of people who have lost art competitions to a Hautman Brother, three brothers from Minnesota who’ve garnered national recognition for their scenic artwork. 

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