New Eyes: Visions of the Southwest from Childhood: Curated by Annie Brooke Lang, 2015-2016 Anne Ray Intern

Exhibit extended from June 2016 to March 1, 2017!

Exhibit, SAR Administration Hallway

Sunday, January 1–Tuesday, February 28, 2017, Free

Francis Tafoya, Lone Deer, 1965.Francis Tafoya, Lone Deer, 1965.Santa Clara Pueblo, age 18. Watercolor on board. SAR.1989-28-91.Francis Tafoya, Lone Deer, 1965.Santa Clara Pueblo, age 18. Watercolor on board. SAR.1989-28-91.

Paintings by youth artists offer a unique glimpse into everyday life. The IARC houses over 200 paintings and drawings by Native American youth, the youngest just six years old. These works display creativity and ingenuity, with many demonstrating technical skill rivalling work by adults.

While teaching styles and techniques become apparent when examining the collection, each work shows the freedom the students were allowed and encouraged to explore. At Jemez Day School, Principal and art teacher Al Momaday (Kiowa) encouraged experimentation with color and design. Similarly, Bob Chavez (Cochiti) at St. Catherine’s Indian School persuaded students to develop their own styles while also providing lessons in watercolor, mixing, and layering color. This freedom of color and design is evident in all of the works displayed.

For some, these artworks offer a glimpse into what would become highly successful careers spanning decades. Well-known Navajo painter Beatien Yazz’s body of work not only offers a fascinating view of his progression in style and complexity of composition, but also highlights his early understanding of perspective and modelling. Others, such as Estella Loretto (Jemez Pueblo), continue to create beautiful work, though she is chiefly known today for creating monumental sculptures. Her bronze, Blessed Kateri, stands in front of St. Francis Cathedral in downtown Santa Fe.

Prints are on view in the SAR Administration Hallway. Original paintings available for view at the Indian Arts Research Center. Please contact the IARC at 505.954.7205 or iarc[at] to make an appointment for a tour. Members Free/Non-members $15.

Follow us: