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Original Painting of Two Women Resting in a Field of Flowers

C3976-paint.jpg

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Virginia Stroud (1951 - ) Cherokee - Creek Nations
  • Category: Paintings
  • Origin: Cherokee Nation
  • Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
  • Size:
    Image: 29 ½” x 39”
    Framed: 33 ¼” x 43 ¼”
  • Item # C3976
  • Price: $2,500.00

Between 1875 and 1878, seventy-two Native American men from various Plains tribes were imprisoned at Fort Marion in Saint Augustine, Florida. The prisoners became part of a program developed by Richard Henry Pratt focusing on the idea that for the captives to become “successful,” the philosophy of “kill the Indian and save the man” was implemented.  One of the tenets of this program was to teach the prisoners a trade. The men were given art supplies, pencils and watercolors, to draw. The paintings were called “Ledger Drawings” because the paper they used came from pages of old bank or business ledger books.

About twenty of these prisoners, mostly Cheyenne and Kiowa drew hundreds of images recording aspects of their lives before incarceration. While participants in a program that was both cruel and inhumane, the artists created works of art that documented and celebrated the history and beauty of the life they had left behind.

Virginia Stroud has modified this pictographic style of 19th-Century ledger drawings to paint images that show the historical Indian culture not only still survives, but is flourishing in contemporary society.  

Virginia Stroud’s mother died when she was eleven and she went to live with her sister in Muskogee, OK.  With her sister’s encouragement, she began to study the heritage of all Indian tribes, especially her own.  An additional inspiration was Dick West who, impressed with her artistic ability, made the young girl his assistant.  She sold her first painting by the time she was thirteen.

“Considering herself a ‘visual orator’ she says, ‘I want people to look back at my work just like today we look back at the ledger drawings to see how it was then. I’m working 100 years after those people and saying this is how we still do it...we still have our traditions.”  Southwest Art, August 1993

This painting honors the ledger drawing style of her ancestors, with a colorful twist. Two young women are relaxing in a field of pink, purple and white flowers as they watch their horses grazing. Their dresses, jewelry and hairstyle are in the traditional style. They sit in front of two teepees and there are two more teepees in the distance.

 

Virginia Stroud (1951- ) signatureCondition: The Original Painting of Two Women Resting in a Field of Flowers is in excellent condition. It is signed on the bottom left and dated 1984.

Provenance: Originally from The Trail of Tears Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia, and now from the collection of a Santa Fe resident who owned that gallery

Recommended Reading:

- Plains Indian Art from Fort Marion by Karen Daniels Petersen

- Silver Horn, Master Illustrator of the Kiowas by Candace S. Greene

Close up view area of this painting.

Virginia Stroud (1951 - ) Cherokee - Creek Nations
  • Category: Paintings
  • Origin: Cherokee Nation
  • Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
  • Size:
    Image: 29 ½” x 39”
    Framed: 33 ¼” x 43 ¼”
  • Item # C3976
  • Price: $2,500.00

C3976-paint.jpgC3976-large.jpg Click on image to view larger.