Grandson of a medicine man, the artist grew up absorbing the stories of his culture, as told by his grandfather.
A graduate of Southern Utah University, he returned to his homeland and began interpreting those childhood stories in his own, award-winning way.
He says, “I must be careful with these symbols and the sacred information I draw inspiration from. My paintings are my own vision. I believe it is the role of the artist to communicate and teach the next generation.”
At the same time, his artistic talent allows all of us to enjoy his work, as well, as seen in this compelling portrait.
The portrait of one of the Yebe’che’i, who dance during the sacred Nightway ceremony, gains esthetic and dramatic importance from the thick impasto technique which he used.
The artist’s choice of color, with a judicious placement of brights, creates the impression of the glow from a large bonfire, lighting up the face.
Expressionistic and impressionistic, as well, his skill has transcended the lack of detail.
The headdress, the turquoise and clamshell necklace, and the long hair and feathers of the subject are beautifully conveyed, even as we sense the movement of a dance, and the winter wind blowing.
Modest in size, this painting is powerful in impact, and beautiful to behold, full of the spirituality of the subject.