Painting of Yei Figure by Helen Hardin [SOLD]


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Helen Hardin, Santa Clara Pueblo Painter

This original painting was created in 1977 by Helen Hardin, a talented artist from Santa Clara Pueblo. Hardin's works usually focus on a figure of some sort—animals most frequently, but also humans and a wide range of deities and spiritual beings. With this piece she explores the latter category, stepping outside of Tewa cosmology and into that of the Diné of the Navajo Nation.

The figure here is a Yei, a significant being in the Diné religion. Hardin's Yei has a round head, which signifies that he is male. Arrowhead-shaped elements appear above his hands. Within the figure and in the background, triangular and arrow-shaped elements are prevalent, suggesting movement and energy to the viewer. Hardin's palette uses soft orange, bronze and gold tones heavily, while red, pink and white highlight the figure's form. As always, textural pleasures abound for the viewer who chooses to study the painting closely. Because each creation offers something unique, we never tire of spending time with Helen Hardin's work.

Santa Clara Pueblo artist signature of Helen Hardin (1943-1984) Tsa-Sah-Wee-Eh - Little Standing Spruce

The painting is signed Tsa-Sah-Wee-Eh and dated 1977 in lower right. It is displayed in an updated version of Hardin's preferred framing style, which uses a small frame mounted over a fabric backing within a larger frame.

Helen Hardin (1943-1984) Tsa-Sah-Wee-Eh or "Little Standing Spruce" was an innovative and influential painter from Santa Clara Pueblo. Hardin was born in 1943 to Santa Clara Pueblo painter Pablita Velarde and Caucasian civil servant Herbert Hardin. Inspired by her mother, she began creating and selling paintings as a teenager. She went in a different direction than her mother and her mother's peers, creating more contemporary works that depict Native American symbology with striking geometrical patterns and abstract imagery. She died of cancer in 1984, leaving behind an astounding body of work for her many admirers to enjoy.

Condition: good condition

Provenance: this Painting of Yei Figure by Helen Hardin is from a private collection.

Recommended Reading:  Changing Woman: The Life and Art of Helen Hardin by Jay Scott

TAGS: Helen HardinSanta Clara PuebloPablita VelardeNative American symbolsNative American PaintingsAcoma Pueblo

Helen Hardin, Santa Clara Pueblo Painter
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