Minnesota Vikings 1961

Bill Band

1 in stock

Watercolor Painting

Bill Band

This beautifully framed piece features an original piece of watercolor artwork glass-framed in an attractive two inch wide black resin frame with a double mat. The outer dimensions of the framed piece are approximately 17” wide x 24.5” high, although the exact size will vary according to the size of the original piece of art.

$595.00 USD - Price includes framing as well as fast, free shipping with UPS

This beautifully framed piece features an original piece of watercolor artwork glass-framed in an attractive two inch wide black resin frame with a double mat. The outer dimensions of the framed piece are approximately 17” wide x 24.5” high, although the exact size will vary according to the size of the original piece of art.

At the core of the framed piece is the actual piece of original artwork as painted by the artist on textured 100% rag, water-marked watercolor paper. In many cases the original artwork has handwritten notes in pencil from the artist (be sure to “See the actual artwork without the frame” elsewhere in this website). Simply put, this is beautiful, one-of-a-kind artwork.

The outer mat is a rich textured black acid-free mat with a decorative inset white v-groove, while the inner mat is a complimentary colored acid-free mat reflecting one of the team’s primary colors. The website image of this framed piece shows the mat color that we suggest (Purple), but since each piece is custom framed, we are happy to use whatever color mat you wish (depending on availability) – our standard mat colors are:

Light Blue / Dark Blue / Brown / Maroon (close to brown) / White / Silver / Gold / Yellow (bright yellow) / Green (dark green) / Orange / Purple / Red (bright red, somewhat close to PMS 186)

Beneath the artwork is a silver plate with black text describing the original artwork. The text for this piece will read:

This original, one-of-a-kind watercolor painting of the 1961 Minnesota Vikings uniform is the original artwork that was used in the creation of this Minnesota Vikings uniform evolution print and tens of thousands of other Minnesota Vikings products that have been sold across North America. This original piece of art was painted by artist Bill Band for Maple Leaf Productions Ltd.

Beneath the silver plate is a 3” x 9” reproduction of a well known, best-selling print that celebrates the history of the team. The print beautifully illustrates the chronological evolution of the team’s uniform and shows you how the original art was used in the creation of this print. If you look closely, you will see that the print features the actual artwork being offered for sale. The 3” x 9” print looks like this:

The piece is framed with an extremely high quality framing glass. We have used this glass style for many years with excellent results. We package every piece very carefully in a double layer of bubble wrap and a rigid double-wall cardboard package to avoid breakage at any point during the shipping process, but if damage does occur, we will gladly repair, replace or refund. Please note that all of our products come with a 90 day 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Each framed piece also comes with a two page letter signed by Scott Sillcox describing the history behind the art. If there was an extra-special story about your piece of art, that story will be included in the letter. When you receive your framed piece, you should find the letter lightly attached to the front of the framed piece.

If you have any questions, at any time, about the actual artwork or about any of the artist’s handwritten notes on the artwork, I would love to tell you about them. Simply email me, Scott Sillcox, at scott@heritagesportsart.com and I will tell you everything I can about your original piece of art. The artists and I spent well over ten years of our lives creating these pieces of original artwork, and in many cases there are stories I can tell you about your actual piece of artwork that might add an extra element of interest in your one-of-a-kind purchase.

Please note that all reproduction rights for this original work are retained in perpetuity by the National Football League unless specifically stated otherwise in writing by the NFL. For further information, please contact Heritage Sports Art at questions@heritagesportsart.com .



The beginning of Minnesota's NFL history is quite intriguing, but to understand it you need to know a bit about the American Football League.The American Football League (AFL) began in 1960 as an 8 team rival league to the NFL. Both leagues competed head to head for players, fans and broadcast revenue. This was the way it was from 1960 to 1965 - two separate leagues, two separate champions, although few people would have honestly believed that the AFL champion could have beaten the NFL champs. Then in 1965 the two leagues agreed to merge. It was decided that beginning in 1970 there would be only one league, the NFL. In the interim, between 1966 and 1969, the AFL Champion would play the NFL Champion for the World Championship. It was only after the first World Championship had been played in 1966 that the name Super Bowl came into being.That being said, let's get back to Minnesota in 1959, where the upstart AFL league, in preparation of its inaugural season in 1960, awards Max Winter and Bill Boyer a franchise for a team in Minneapolis. Then early in 1960, prior to the start of the AFL season, the NFL offers the same group an NFL franchise which they accept. Thus, the Minnesota Vikings become the NFL's 14th squad for the 1961 NFL season instead of an AFL team for the 1960 season.As the team first coach, ex-player Norm Van Brocklin, who had just led the Philadelphia Eagles to the 1960 league championship and then retired faced an uphill battle of creating a viable, competitive football entity in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Convinced that gifted, New York Giants passer George Shaw could be their quarterback of the future, the Vikings traded for the quarterback in turn giving up a 1st round draft pick. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending how you look at things, Shaw was injured in the first quarter of the Vikings opening game. Young understudy Fran Tarkenton took over the helm and helped the Vikings beat the Chicago Bears 37-13 for one of the most impressive debuts in NFL history. Unfortunately, the rest of the season would not be as rosy as the Vikings would eventually finish 3-11. Tarkenton would, however, go on to lead the Minnesota offence between the years 61-66 & 72-78 and in the process become one of the NFL's greatest passers.The 61 home uniform showcased here, as worn by Tarkenton and Rip Hawkins, consists of a simple, yet elegant color schematic and logo design that will go relatively unchanged over the course of the next 40 years!Of note: Bert Rose, the Vikings first general manager, selected the Vikings name because so many Minnesotans can trace their heritage to Scandinavia.

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