Arthur C. Begay, Sr., Navajo Nation Painter
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Arthur C. Begay was born in 1932. He has lived for most of his life near Newcomb, New Mexico, not far from the Two Grey Hills Trading Post. In the 1950s, Arthur won a fellowship to study under the famous Saturday Evening Post illustrator, Norman Rockwell, and spent a year working in Rockwell's studio in Westport, CT. Arthur's work has many characteristic features learned from Rockwell.
Arthur C. Begay, Sr. (1932-2010) is at the same time a known Navajo artist and an elusive character. He seems to be somewhat nomadic, as is traditionally Navajo and not necessarily interested in either fame or fortune. The quality of his work, when it is available, is what has given him the "fame" that he has.
When you see Arthur's work, you realize he had great love for Monument Valley and Shiprock. It is the setting for many if not most of his paintings. The vivid colors of the sandstone buttes and the unusual intricate forms or "monuments" make a spectacular backdrop for Arthur's scenes of daily Navajo life. Arthur is included in American Indian Painters; A Biographical Directory by Jeanne Snodgrass and Patrick Lester's book, The Biographical Directory of Native American Painters. Arthur's painting are also in many museums, including The Smithsonian Institution.
Reference: Desbah D. Allison
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