Original Painting of a Colorful Face by Fritz Scholder

C4467-paint.jpg

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Fritz Scholder, Luiseño Indian Painter
  • Category: Paintings
  • Origin: The Luiseño - Payómkawichum
  • Medium: Acrylic on paper
  • Size:
    23” x 15-⅛” image;
    30-⅜” x 22-⅛” framed
  • Item # C4467A
  • Price: $6500

This original acrylic painting was created by influential Luiseño artist Fritz Scholder.  Adobe Gallery has handled many of Scholder’s works over the years, and each one has been a pleasure to explore.   Scholder moved through different styles and explored a variety of themes during his long career, and he managed to navigate these thematic shifts with great success.  Most of our previous listings have featured some sort of explicitly Native imagery.  This piece is a bit more abstract and mysterious than those previous listings.

Scholder’s subject here is a face, or perhaps a mask.  A beautiful purple tone is used to define its edges, and a bold blue divides it horizontally.  Its upper section blends blue into bright red.  In its lower section, all these colors are blended together, creating a rich dark purple.  The face or mask is set over a gray rectangular form with a horizontal stripe of wispy purple at its bottom edge.  This form is framed by the lighter gray tone of the paper. The image, as a whole, feels deep and mysterious; it invites the viewer to wonder just who or what was the subject of this abstracted portrait.  The artist’s strong color choices and confident brushstrokes elevate the fairly simple composition into the realm of the extraordinary. 

Artist Signature of Fritz Scholder, Luiseño Indian Painter.The painting is signed Scholder in lower center. The paper is mounted securely with its edges exposed, within an off-white mat.  A simple wood frame with a subtle pink tone and a sheet of Plexiglas complete the presentation.

Fritz Scholder (1937-2005) was by birth one-quarter Luiseño Indian, a California Mission Tribe. He was born in Minnesota, spent two decades in the Dakotas, and lived in Galisteo, NM and Scottsdale, AZ. Scholder came to Santa Fe in 1964 to teach advanced painting and art history at the new Institute of American Indian Arts, a school established by the United States Department of the Interior. He had obtained a Master of Fine Arts degree at the University of Arizona in 1964 before moving to Santa Fe and joining IAIA.  Scholder enjoyed a long and successful career and is regarded today as one of the most innovative and influential Native artists.


Condition: excellent condition, small pinholes in upper left and upper right

Provenance: this Original Painting of a Colorful Face by Fritz Scholder is from a private collection

Recommended Reading: INDIAN KITSCH The Use and Misuse of Indian Images by Fritz Scholder (author)

Relative Links: Luiseño Indian, a California Mission TribeSanta FepaintingslithographsAlbuquerqueFritz Scholder, Luiseño Indian Painter

Close up view of this powerful face.

Fritz Scholder, Luiseño Indian Painter
  • Category: Paintings
  • Origin: The Luiseño - Payómkawichum
  • Medium: Acrylic on paper
  • Size:
    23” x 15-⅛” image;
    30-⅜” x 22-⅛” framed
  • Item # C4467A
  • Price: $6500

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