Oil on Canvas, Titled "Elders Wisdom" From the Vanishing Series, By Del Curfman, #1170
Description: #1170 Native American, Oil on Canvas, Titled "Elders Wisdom" From the Vanishing Series, By Del Curfman, This piece is available on commission. We require 50% of the price as a down payment. It takes about a month to paint, dry and ship the piece. If you are interested, please let us know.
Dimensions: 10" x 8"
Condition: New on commission request
Comments by the Artist Del Curfman along with his background and what inspires his work.
Art is in our humanity, which demonstrates our most fragile yet significant moments in life. As a child, I grew up in-between modernism and traditionalism, which often times left me confused, and eventually influenced me to know about the both aspects of Western life and indigenous heritage: I became eager to know and learn. Through art, I discover myself. As I study more about the history of my people, the Apsaalooké, and learn the language, the rights of passage, and the values of the Crow, I find my works transforming into a vessel that shares cultural experiences and diversity. My ancestors have been my role models and spiritual mentors. I intend to inspire and contribute to Native Community and connect to humanity through Native American contemporary art.
Del Curfman graduated from the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Studio Arts with an emphasis in painting and in Museum Studies in May 2017. He is currently a Newman’s Own Fellow at the Center for Native American Youth (CNAY) at the Aspen Institute based in Washington, D.C.
Curfman is known for his work with Apsaalooke’ (Crow Nation of Montana) imagery and cultural exploration. Curfman investigates heritage, tradition, and humanity through painting by incorporating techniques and styles of impressionism. With loose brushwork and semi-abstraction, he looks to capture the essence of nature in motion. He contributes through contemporary Native Artist history through his work in oil paints and community-based projects.
The Vanishing Series is a response to the perception that Native American culture has or will “vanish.” This idea of disappearance has been a mainstream thought that has only been propagated by Edward Curtis, a photographer who in 1904 produced a collection of photographs titled “Vanishing Race.”
My paintings utilize the notion of vanishing through a stark white background crossing over Native American figures as if the sands of time and space are impermanent to a permanent people. Tradition will not be lost. The Vanishing Series aims to belie this exact idea, my artwork has become a vessel of cultural sharing and knowledge.
Some Background on the Crow Community from the Artist and some back story to the works and their cultural importance.
"The Crow Fair Celebration is the largest Native American event in Montana, and one of the biggest powwows in the country. Held each year in Crow Agency, Montana by The Apsáalooke people of the Crow Indian Reservation just South of Hardin, Montana. Also known as the “Tipi Capital of the world”, Crow Fair begins on the third Thursday in August and attracts more than 50,000 spectators and participants from the around the world.
Besides the pow-wow, there are many other attractions. Each year the fair holds a parade, which winds its way through the campsites. The parade begins each morning of the Fair at ten o’clock. The Color Guard leads the parade with retired veterans and active members of the armed services. Following the Color Guard are the President, Vice-President, and First Vice-President of the Crow Fair. The President carries the American Flag.
The parade includes contests for best traditional dress in more than half a dozen categories. Riders on horseback are followed by elaborately decorated cars, trucks and trailers. Some are decorated in memorial to tribal elders who have passed during the prior year. Others carry multiple generations from elders to newborns. Princesses, ranging in age from preschool to 18, ride along the route, on horseback or by vehicle, wearing traditional, elaborate dress with perfect, modest poise.
The Crow Fair Pow Wow is much like pow wows throughout the west, except for more emphasis on traditional dance styles. You can pick out [the Crow tribe’s style] from hundreds of dancers because the dress ways are the same as the turn of the last century. The only additions are material things to decorate their regalia.
The pow wow grand entry begins at 1 p.m. sharp. It is led by the veteran honor guard, followed by all the dancers who will participate in the contests that have been held throughout the week. The announcer introduces competing drum groups that surround the arbor, each taking a turn keeping the beat.
In addition to the Crow people, members of other tribes come to dance and sing and sell their goods on the midway that surrounds the arbor. Dance contests, with substantial prize money, are held throughout the week with participants ranging in age from preschool to elders." (Source: Crazy Crow.com)