Wednesday, February 19, 2014
The Tradition Lives On
I spent a long time looking at this painting "The Tradition Lives On" by David Bradley hanging in the Heard Museum. Mr. Bradley painted this piece in 2007 and said he wanted to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Heard Museum Guild's Indian Fair and Market. At the same time he was paying tribute to the great masters of Indian art who paved the way for all Native American artists. He also sprinkled in a few influential great artists and some pop culture figures.
In the center front row is Maria Martinez a potter. He placed her in the center because the tradition of pottery-making is an elemental form of Indian art. To her left is Charles Loloma, a jeweler and Allan Houser the famous sculptor. On the other side, to her right is Fritz Scholder a painter, he is shaking hands with fabric artist Lloyd New. Standing between them is painter T.C. Cannon. You might have also spotted, Freda Kahlo handing flowers to Georgia O'Keeffe with R.C. Gorman looking on. Behind Freda is Diego Rivera. And, did you spot Pablo Picasso wearing his trademark striped shirt? Some of the pop culture figures I spotted are The Lone Ranger near the center in the white hat and of course, Grant Wood's American Gothic figures to the far right of the painting. They are holding some Indian art pieces instead of the iconic pitchfork.
You can see that there is plenty to see in this painting. One can look at it for a long time and continue to spot new people and places.