1.) "Supreme Respect for the Two Spirits", 16"x20", Kiln-fired Enameled Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8/2013.
"Supreme Respect for the Two Spirits" was inspired by the Supreme Court rulings in June 2013 which gave a pair of major victories for the gay rights movement. The Supreme Court ruled that married same-sex couples were entitled to federal benefits and, by declining to decide a case from California, effectively allowed same-sex marriages there. I was shocked by this decision by this court. It was the most important legal breakthrough for equal rights around the world during in my lifetime and I wanted celebrate it by creating this work of art.
I found a postcard/photograph titled "Squaw Jim and his Squaw" during my research at the National Museum of the American Indian for the Artists in Leadership Program in 2011. His name was Osh-Tisch (Finds Them and Kills Them) and he was a Crow warrior who lived from 1854-1929. This image affected me deeply as the earliest known photograph of an American Indian two spirit person or berdache. Before Christianity came to native people's, two spirit people were revered in their communities. Squaw Jim (Woman Jim is a more PC title) was a respected leader.
When I study black and white images to create portraits in glass I look very carefully at what the people are wearing to try to express and interpret accurately the personality of the person. I set out to render them in the most elegant and honest way that I can. Iridescent and vividly colored glass intensifies the emotional power of the work. I put the Supreme Court behind my subjects as a backdrop and found out what it says on the front of the building..."Equal Justice Under Law"!
I hope that the new Pope will bring the world together by refocusing our attention on helping the poor, promoting love and understanding for our fellow man and backing equal rights for all.
2.)"Bobby Angel", Enameled Art Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 11x14, 2/2007.
The paisley background, face, and feathers in this artwork are enameled and fired in a kiln to over 1000 degrees. This was my first use of paisley as a symbolic element in my work. Paisley patterns bring to mind natural forms, but also historical references from shawls and textile trade goods from the 1800's. It is a recurring element that adds dimension and mystery to my designs.
3.) “The Human Element”, Enameled art glass on cement board, 30”x40”, 8/2011.
Permanent collection of the Atka Lakota Museum, Chamberlain, South Dakota
In "The Human Element", on the wall behind the figure, is a iridescent periodic table which represents the seed of inspiration for the artwork. Planted when I saw the slick Dow chemical advertising campaign aimed at reassuring Americans that we are doing all we can to protect our environment and humanity. Humans being the element H on the periodic chart. To the right, a poster of the Deepwater Horizon, prior to it's demise, flying the Don't Tread on Me flag over the American Flag represents the tea party political movement and the oil industry. The wall is covered in paisley patterns which is a symbolic element to bring to mind natural forms and historical references to shawls and textile trade goods from the 1800's. Paisley originated in ancient religious designs and it communicates spiritual power in its reflection of the chaotic complexity of nature. The boy is elaborately clothed to express our materialism and narcissism. He wears a peace and friendship medal given to Native Americans in the 1800's as they were signing treaties with the government. He holds The Billings Gazette with an article entitled Oil and Water about the oil spill on the Yellowstone River. Under his feet is an authentic Afghan war rug with tanks, helicopters, and an AK47. I intentionally chose vivid and clashing colors to heighten the emotional impact of the piece. The beauty of iridescent and textured glass is used to entice the viewer to consider the elements presented in the artwork. The artwork is meant to challenge our perception that complex issues can be viewed in black and white terms: either wholly good or evil depending upon our point of view and to start a conversation with the viewer about whether we really are doing all we can to preserve our environment and, if not, why. (Advertising as brainwashing?)
4.) “Medicine Bottle”, Art Glass Mosaic on Masonite, 131/2”x191/2”, 11/2002.
*First art glass mosaic piece, Permanent Collection of the Akta Lakota Museum, Chamberlain, South Dakota, 2007.
This dark work depicts my perception of the utter despair and hopelessness felt by American Indian people as they experienced the destruction of their culture and environment caused by the encroachment of white society during the 19th and 20th centuries. I was inspired by a tiny photograph of Medicine Bottle, taken right before he was executed, along with 39 other Dakota Sioux warriors at Fort Snelling in Minnesota for their roles in what is called the “Minnesota Massacre” in 1862. In my mosaic I have wrapped him in a red trade blanket distributed among the Indian people, some of which spread the smallpox infection, which decimated them during the 19th century. Floating above Medicine Bottle are ethereal figures inspired by a winter count drawing on buffalo hide showing them in smallpox blankets with spots of purple and red. A winter count is a Native American calendar maintained to record the significant events of the year. Some date back to the 1700's.
5.) “7th Generation”, Enameled art glass mosaic on tile board, 10”x14”, 7/2004.
*3rd place award in Diverse Arts Category, Santa Fe Indian Art Market 2005.
6.) “Woodpecker” (Ske-Luta-Win), Enameled art glass mosaic on tile board, 121/2”x161/2”, 8/2006.
*2nd place award in Diverse Arts Category, Santa Fe Indian Art Market 2006.
This artwork was inspired by a photograph of my 6th great aunt. A very powerful woman who was married to Shot in the Eye.
7.) “Earth Mother”, Enameled art glass mosaic on tile board, 20”x28”, 6/2006.
*1st place award in Diverse Arts Category, Santa Fe Indian Art Market 2006.
This artwork was inspired by a photograph of my 6th great grandmothers sister.
8.) “Independence Day”, Enameled art glass mosaic on tile board, 20”x24”, 8/2007.
*1st Place Mixed Media, Red Cloud Art Show, Pine Ridge, South Dakota, 2008.
This artwork deals with the relationship between the Catholic Church and Native American families which had profound implications on their survival and their culture.
9.) “Naming Ceremony”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 18”x24”, 2/2007.
*Powers Award for best depiction of native women, Red Cloud Art Show, Pine Ridge, South Dakota, 2008.
*Permanent Collection of the Heritage Center, Red Cloud Indian School, Pine Ridge, South Dakota, 2008.
10.) Kiln Shot, "Paws before firing".
11.) “Paws”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 11”x11”, 7/2008, Portrait Commission.
12.) “That Sacred One Smiling”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 6/2010.
13.) Glass Art Magazine Cover May/June 2010, “Holyman”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 13 1/2”x19 1/2”, 8/2007.
14.) “Absaroka Wilderness”, Art glass mosaic on tile board, 40”x30”, 9/2008, Commissioned Artwork.
15.) “Eva”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 5”x7”, 3/2011.
*2nd Place Mixed Media 2-D, Santa Fe Indian Art Market 2011.
16.) “Iron Cedar Woman”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 10”x10”, 5/2011.
17.) “Touch the Clouds II”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x12”, 5/2011.
18.) “Squeezebox”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 14”x20”, 11/2007, Portrait Commission.
19.) “The Means Justify the Ends”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 20”x34”, 5/2008.
In “The Means Justify the Ends”, the background is paisley, a pattern I use to represent the chaotic unpredictable quality of life or the complexity of the cosmos. Paisley first brings to mind natural forms, but also vague historical and spiritual references lending the work complexity. This artwork depicts Russell Means in a distinct pose that echoes the look of the ‘70s when he emerged as a public figure. Red Cloud is also depicted on a miniature poster in the background. Chief Red Cloud and I share a grandfather (Old Smoke). I initially sought to create a straightforward portrait of Russell Means, because of his prominence as a leader in the American Indian Movement (AIM) during the Wounded Knee incident in the 1970s. My intention was to bring up the topic of controversial figures by juxtaposing the two leaders. My father told me that many people thought Red Cloud and Spotted Tail were sell-outs for going along with the whites, a fact of which I had been unaware until he saw this piece and expressed his thoughts. Red Cloud eventually accepted that a future for his people depended upon negotiation and agreed to submit to reservation life in exchange for the education for his people. All people who choose to lead are loved and hated, and the relative importance or tyranny is in the eye of the beholder -- a fact that became clearer after this artwork inspired my dad to share his own knowledge of historical politics. I feel this idea is important to keep in mind today when considering prominent people, the reasons behind their actions and the long term effects of their deeds.
20.) “Yellow Zinnia”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 7/2008.
21.) “After the Rain”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x12”, 4/2011.
22.) “Unci” (Grandmother), Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x12”, 4/2011.
23.) “Sheep Mountain at Sunrise”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 6/2010.
*Diederich Landscape award for best Landscape-Red Cloud Art Show 2010
24.) “Thaw” Stained Glass in wood frame.
25.) “Spotted Fawn”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 4/2011.
26.) “River Rock Rorschach” Left, Art glass mosaic on cement board, 8”x10”, 4/2011.
27.) “River Rock Rorschach” Right, Art glass mosaic on cement board, 8”x10”, 4/2011.
28.) “Dentalium Diva”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 12”x16”, 5/2011.
*The Bonnie Erickson Award: best representation of children, The Red Cloud Art Show 2011
29.) “Twilight”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x12”, 3/2011.
30.) “Bobby Angel II”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 5”x7”, 6/2010. sold
31.) “Jack”, Enameled art glass on cement board, 5”x7”, 3/2011.
32.) “Buckwheat”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x9”, 11/2008. sold
33.) “Red Zinnia”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x16”, 6/2008.
34.) “Yellow Prickly”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 14”x14”, 1/2008.
35.)“Red Prickly”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 14”x14”, 11/2007.
36.) “Metis”, Enameled art glass on cement board, 8”x10”, 5/2008.
37.) “Whidbey #1” Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 5”x7”, 3/2010.
38.) “Take Out”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 11/2006.
39.) “Red Shirt”, Enameled art glass on cement board, 5”x7”, 3/2011.
Permanent collection of the Washington Pavilion, Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
40.) “Rock Creek”, Art Glass Mosaic on Cement Board, 32”x52”,
41.) “Autumn Moon”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 18”x36”, 8/2007.
42.) “Whidbey Island Left”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 22”x28”, 2/2010. Commissioned Artwork
43.) “Whidbey Island Right”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 22”x28”, 2/2010. Commissioned Artwork
44.) “Indian Paintbrush”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 9”x12”, 11/2007.
45.) “Silver Moon”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 20”x24”, 7/2004.
46.) “Bad Face Pride”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x8”, 7/2008.
*1st Place Mixed Media for “Bad Face Pride”, Red Cloud Indian Art Show 2009
47.) “Return of White Buffalo Calf Woman”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board in iron frame, 69”x82”, 9/2009. Red Cloud High School, Commissioned Artwork.
48.) “Kane Glass Window”, Stained Glass Window in Iron Frame, 54”x68”, 2003. Commissioned Artwork
49.) “Inyan”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 4/2011.
50.) “Smoke”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 22”x28”, 8/2010.
51.) “Powwow Singers”, Enamel on Iridescent Glass on cement board, 8”x10”. sold
52.) “Touch the Clouds”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8”x10”, 4/2011.
53.) “Chase In the Morning”, Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 20”x24”, 3/2005.
54.) "Cur Camping", 22"x28", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8/2012.
*2014 Native Pop: Best of Show
*2013 Cherokee Art Market: *Judges Choice
55.) "Summa Cum Laude", 11"x14", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 1/2012
*Tony Begay Memorial Award, Red Cloud Art Show 2012.
56.) "Kiksuyapi 1862" (remember, don't forget), 14"x18", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 5/2012.
*Best of Classification (Painting, Drawings, Graphics), First Place mixed Media paintings, and Best of Division, Santa Fe Indian Art Market 2012.
57.) "Puppy Love", 16"x20", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 8/2014
*Second Place: Mixed Media: "Puppy Love"
*Museum Acquisition “Puppy Love”, Permanent Collection
The Heritage Center Pine Ridge, South Dakota
58.) "Wanagi"(Ghost), 14"x18", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 5/2012.
59.) "Bring the People", 38"x28", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 4/2015.
*1st Place Mixed Media, Red Cloud Art Show 2015.
"Bring the People" was created for the Lakota Emergence Exhibit created by The Center for American Indian Research and Native Studies (CAIRNS) currently on exhibit at the South Dakota Art Museum in Brookings, South Dakota through October 17th. The exhibit can be viewed on line here http://www.nativecairns.org/
I love wolves, and I wanted the wolf in my mosaic to have a very regal, kind of spiritual feel. My mosaic captures the moment in the emergence narrative when Iktomi loads parfleche saddle bags onto the back of the wolf and takes him to the entrance of Wind cave. He told [the wolf] to go and watch the people under the world and when he saw a strong and brave young man to speak with him alone, and to give him the pack and tell him that there were plenty of such things in the world. The power of my art is in the meticulous process of cutting and grinding and painting small pieces of colored glass, and then assembling them into luminescent scenes that evoke the painstaking detail of beadwork artists in the past and present who use glass beads to build complicated and intricate patterns. It's the vivid colors brought together in different ways that cause the emotional impact that I'm trying to accomplish. People say that my art is all about process, and that's absolutely true. I love the process of constructing the artwork, piece by piece. I think a lot of native artists work like me. We appreciate the traditional quillwork and beadwork that's really labor intensive.
When Iktomi, Anunk Ite and her family were banished from the underworld, they were also prohibited from returning to it. Therefore, in order to get the meat and clothing from this world to the Pte [Buffalo] people in the underworld, Iktomi had to enlist the assistance of animals. In this case, he chose a wolf to carry the gifts through the earth to the underworld, and instructed the wolf that after it arrived among the Pte [Buffalo] people to pick out a strong, brave young man to communicate with. The wolf almost certainly would have carried saddlebags made from rawhide and packed with the gifts from Anunk Ite. All such containers are called parfleches. Some are cylindrical, some are shaped like suitcases and some are flat like envelopes. Long, flat, envelope-shaped parfleches like these were often used to store dried food. Sometimes a number of families would bury these parfleches in a shared underground cache. Parfleche envelopes most commonly were in pairs with nearly identical geometric designs. Each woman would identify her parfleches by their design, which she created and was hers alone. A woman could therefore easily identify and retrieve her parfleches from a shared cache.
60.) "Sicangu", 2/2014 38"x28", Kiln-fired Enameled Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 2/2014.
*1st Place Mixed Media, Red Cloud Art Show 2014.
61.) "Three Ways of Dreaming: Crazy Walking", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enameled Glass and Mirrors Mosaic on Tile Board, 12"x12", 2/14.
*First Place & *Judges Choice: Painting/Mixed Media: "Three Ways of Dreaming"(a triptych): The Heard Museum, Juried 57th Annual Indian Fair & Market
62.) "Three Ways of Dreaming: Fears Nothing", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enameled Glass and Mirrors Mosaic on Tile Board, 12"x12", 1/15.
63.) "Three Ways of Dreaming: Whirlwind Dreamer", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enameled Glass and Mirrors Mosaic on Tile Board, 12"x12", 1/15.
64.)"The Race for Paha Sapa", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 36"x36", 2/16.
*Second Place Mixed Media Painting: "The Great Race for
Paha Sapa" Santa Fe Indian Art Market, Juried, 95th Annual
In "The Race for Paha Sapa" I was asked to participate in a group show of Lakota artists which told the ancient story of how the Black Hills was formed. Each artist illustrated a part of the tale. Mine eluded to the presence of a dinosaur water serpent called the Unkche Ghila. This was the first time I had heard this story but it turned out that my father had grown up knowing it.
In Montana we have Greg Gianforte, a billionaire who built a creationist dinosaur museum, running for Governor. I have always loved science and could not put a Dinosaur in my artwork even though I think it's clear that fossils were the inspiration for many early cultures for figuring out what came before and directly influenced many origin legends. I decided to combine the Lakota Great Race legend with the Cheyenne(?) version from the Akta Lakota Museum. I used Pliestocene animals to show the age of the legend. I visited the North Dakota Heritage Center and State Museum in Bismarck, North Dakota. They have impressive exhibits, one of which features a Smilodon skeleton jumping through the air attacking the Bison Latifrons skeleton, another features an extremely beautiful Native American exhibit. I included the tusks of a mastidon, the short faced bear, the Bison Latifrons, the Smilodon Fatalis (saber-toothed cat), and the Pleistocene horse along with other animals from current times from the story. I sought to capture the feeling of being in the black hills with the landscape in the background and as you read the words of the passages I hoped to bring to life the vivid colors of the two versions.
Lakota The Great Race Exhibit (excerpt)
After the air had cleared and there was calm once more, within the rim of the circle of dead animals there was seen a pile of broken rocks standing majestically high in the air. The Lakota say this was how the Black Hills came to be. They called the mass of broken rocks Paha Sapa, or Black Hills.
Since the fabulous race of the ages was visited by a great holocaust, an act of displeasure by the gods, the winners were never fully determined. But legends say the lowly magpie was ahead of all the flying birds. And the Unkche Ghila, a huge animal whom no human being in modern times has ever seen alive, was leading the ground animals.
The Lakota say, that even to this day the remains of this ancient race track are still plainly visible, and there are many large bones still lying around along the historic track. The huge bones of the Unkche Ghila, which, once upon a time, roamed these prairie lands, can be found in the badlands to the east and south of the Black Hills.
There is a ledge-like row of hills surrounding the Black Hills proper. Within this row of hills, there is a depression or indentation which also encircles the Hills. The Lakota explain this is what remains of the racetrack upon which that fabulous race was run. But scientists explain these strange formations in a more practical way. They are faults, or breaks in the crust of the earth, either shifting upward or dropping downward. However that may be, the Teller of Tales says, "This is what happened in the long ago. This is the Lakota legend".
The Akta Lakota Great Race Story (Cheyenne?)
The Great Race
When the Great Spirit created the earth and all living things upon it, the people and animals lived in peace. Neither people or animals ate flesh. Over time, the buffalo began thinking they were the most powerful beings in the world. They came to believe this gave them the right to kill and eat other animals ... people as well. Then the people said, "This isn't fair; we humans and the buffalo were created equal. But, if it happens that one or the other must be the most powerful, then it should be us!" The buffalo said, "Let's get this settled. We should have a contest to see whether you eat us or we eat you. How about a race?" The people said, "But in a race, you have an unfair advantage; two legs can't compete with four. Suppose we let the birds race for us. They have wings, you have four legs, that makes it more even." The buffalo said, "Agreed. We'll choose our fastest runner, and you choose some birds to race for you." Then some of the other animals said, "We should have a chance to race, too." "That's right; it's only fair," said the buffalo and the people. So, all living things went to a place at the edge of the Black Hills called Buffalo Gap. There they lined up for the race. Contestants Are ChosenThe buffalo chose Running Slim Buffalo Woman as their contestant. She was a young cow who was the fastest of all animals and had never been beaten in a footrace. The human beings chose four birds to race for them: a hummingbird, a meadowlark, a hawk and a magpie. Preparation for the RaceIn those early days of the world, the birds and animals had no color. But, for the race they all painted themselves carefully, each creature according to its own medicine, its own vision. For example, the skunk painted a white stripe on its back. The black-tailed deer painted its tail black. The antelope took some red-brown earth, mixed it with water and painted its whole hide. To this day, all creatures have looked the same since they painted themselves for this great race. The Race BeginsThe signal to race was given, and the crowd of runners started toward a hill, which was the halfway point. Running Slim took off in a flash, with the buffalo cheering her on. For awhile, Hummingbird flew along with her, but soon he fell back exhausted, and Meadowlark took over. Still, Running Slim kept far ahead, leading the great mass of racers with her thundering hooves. Though they had already covered a great distance, Running Slim was fresh. By the time Running Slim reached the halfway point, she and the lark were far ahead of the field. At the hill, the umpires were shouting, "Now turn and race back to the starting point, to Buffalo Gap!" The lark heard this and thought, "I can't make it that far." He dropped out of the race, but Hawk was coming on strongly. Making It HalfwayHawk, acknowledged to be the fastest of the birds, suddenly shot ahead of Running Slim. The people shouted for joy ... but not for long. Hawk's endurance did not match his swiftness, and the sudden spurt exhausted him. Again Running Slim came on, thundering ahead.
With her deep chest, powerful legs and great lungs, it seemed that she could keep up the pace forever. Then, far behind, a little black and white dot could be seen coming up, flying hard. This was Magpie, a slow bird but strong-hearted and persevering. The buffalo herd paid no attention to Magpie; they were cheering their runner while the people watched silently. Some of the racers were running so hard that blood spurted from their mouths and nostrils. It colored the earth beneath them which has ever remained red along the trail where the race was run. Nearing the Finish Line, at last, Buffalo Gap came into sight. Powerful and confident as she was, Running Slim herself was beginning to slow down, though it was hardly noticeable. Even she was not aware of the tiny Magpie, but ran along feeling sure that she would win. Then, very slowly, imperceptibly, Magpie began to gain on her. Buffalo Gap was closer now, though still a good way off. Running Slim could feel herself tiring. The buffalo were grunting and stomping, trying to encourage her. Magpie was still behind, but coming along steadily. Now Buffalo Gap was near. Running Slim Buffalo Woman was really tired, but she gathered all her strength for the last spurt, thundering along with her heart close to bursting. By then, however, Magpie had come up even with her. Both the buffalo and the people were cheering their racers on, calling out to them, yelling and stomping. Finishing StrongThe two racers were speeding up, putting the very last of their strength into their contest. They neared the sticks, painted red, planted in the earth, which marked the finish line.
It was not until they were a hand-breadth away from those sticks, at the last moment that Magpie finally shot ahead. The people gave a great shout of happiness, and both racers fell exhausted. Race ResultsThanks to Magpie's determination, the humans won, and the buffalo were defeated. Ever since the great race, the people have respected the Magpie, never hunting it or eating it. After the race, the people became more powerful than the buffalo and all the other animals, and from that time on, people have hunted the buffalo for their food.
Source: American Indian Myths and Legends; Edited by Richard Erdoes and Alfonso Ortiz.
65.) "Rare Birds", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 16"x20", 3/16.
*Judges Choice: Painting/Mixed Media,The Heard Museum, Juried 58th Annual Indian Fair & Market
"Rare Birds" brings together people, animals, colors and patterns that I love. I was looking for an Audubon painting of a prairie chicken on-line to put on the wall in this design. Instead, I found a picture of the extinct Heath Hen created by George Boorujy a pen and ink artist from New York. His artwork had the emotional power I was looking for so I got his permission to include it in the work. Heath hens were one of the first bird species that Americans tried to save from extinction as early as 1791. In 1840 a bill "for the preservation of heath-hen and other game" was introduced in the New York State Legislature. Some representatives misread the name of the bill as to protect "heathens(Indians) and other game". Here in Montana there are constant battles going on over the prairie chicken, buffalo and wildlife in general. The expression on Boorujy's Heath Hens face echoed how frustrated I feel when people talk about the dangers to our financial wellbeing of preserving and protecting wildlife...not to mention the fact that this face would be the single most attractive image to a female Heath Hen. Nature is a complicated web and we can't keep only the animals that we like...we need them all if we want our world to remain diverse, healthy and able to sustain us. The wallpaper on the wall is of birds feeding their young, mating and otherwise enjoying their lives. The Heathen woman wears a necklace of Pope Francis. Pope Francis has been called a heathen by "traditionalist Catholics" and others if you can believe it. I created this piece to recognize the bravery and commitment to inclusion of Pope Francis...his values match mine.
66.) "Good Buffalo Bull Feels the Bern", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 16"x20", 5/16.
"Good Buffalo Bull Feels the Bern" brings together people, places, color and patterns that I love. Good Buffalo Bull was a thirty-something Oglala Lakota man who's picture was taken in the Late 1800's. His expression was what I was looking for to present Native American's political interests. Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who ever expressed the urgency needed for the problems that we face in the near future. Good Buffalo Bull holds the earth over his heart representing the need to put the future of our earth and nature over money interests whenever possible. Economic issues are the engines of War...We need to begin to ask how we can prevent a continued march toward the next world war. The first step is to stop allowing banks to continue to crash the world economy. What will the next recession look like?!!!...they get progressively worse. After the last one, how do we get though it? These concerns were the driving force behind this artwork. I have used my favorite bird wallpaper pattern in the background to represent nature and Bernie. I'm with her.
67.) "Love is Love", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 28"x38", 8/15.
*1st Place: Mixed Media: "Love is Love", Northern Plains Indian Art Market, Juried
Santa Fe Indian Art Market, Juried, 94th Annual
*Blue Rain Award: "Love is Love", Santa Fe Indian Art Market, Juried, 94th Annual
“Love is Love" pays homage to Klimt’s “The Kiss”. I have reinterpreted the central theme of this powerful composition in an early Lakota cultural context. The figures are personifications of nature, presented as human beings full of youth, beauty, and love in an idyllic setting. The artwork is about the human search for a devotional center to our lives. The figures are perched on a small piece of prairie precipice, representing the dwindling aboriginal land base. The bead-work and the elk tooth dress are manifestations of the gifts of White Buffalo Calf Woman the Lakota Messiah. She brought the buffalo and gave us creative and spiritual focus to our lives through her teachings. The couple is wrapped in a buffalo robe expressing the importance of the buffalo in all aspects of Lakota culture.
68.) "Born in the USA", "Born in the USA" (Heart Mountain Internment Camp, Wyoming, 1944), Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 20"x24", 7/16
*Special Prize Two Dimensional: "Born in the USA": Native Pop: People of the Plains Marketplace, 2016
This artwork is a commission for a gentleman who was born in the Japanese internment camp in 1943. He is the baby in the artwork along with his two brothers. I put the flag in to represent all of the people who served in the military some of whom were related to the client. He stated:
"My grandparents were born in Japan. My mother and father were born and raised in Southern California. My family lived in the San Gabriel valley of Los Angeles county when our family was forced to move to Heart Mountain, Wyoming in 1942. I was born Sept. 12, 1943. My family moved out in of the camp in 1945 and went back to California to start life with the $25.00 given to each person as they left camp. Basically, my family started again with nothing but my parents worked hard and gave each of the kids a good start in life."
69.) "Love Trumps Hate", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass Mosaic on Tile Board, 20"x24", 8/2016.
70.) "Resurrection", Acrylic Painting on Ripstop Nylon made into a Edo Kite by Drake Smith
2nd Place, Collaborative Kite Catagory, Nationals, 2014.
71.) "Resurrection" flying in Cananda.
72.) "Little Eagle", Kiln-fired Vitreous Enamel on Glass, 8"x8", 11/2015.
*1st Place: Mixed Media: Red Cloud Indian Art Show 2016.