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 Clifford Beck, Jr.  (1946 - 1995)

About: Clifford Beck, Jr.


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Lived/Active: Arizona      Known for: figure, portrait, Indian genre

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BIOGRAPHY for Clifford Beck, Jr.
1946 (Keams Canyon, Arizona)


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figure, portrait, Indian genre

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
A painter, illustrator, photographer and teacher, Clifford Beck is a Navajo Indian who settled in Flagstaff, Arizona.  He attended the California College of Arts and Crafts and the University of Northern Arizona. His primary mediums are oil and pastel, and he has been a full-time artist since 1979.

Patrick Lester, Biographical Directory of Native American Painters

Added note:
Clifford Beck, Jr. died October 16, 1995 in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Source: Social Security Death Index

Biography from Southwest Graphics Collection:
"Each face reveals a story," Clifford Beck says. "I analyze faces like a historian analyzes the details of mankind's written history."

Beck, a Navajo Indian currently living in Scottsdale, Arizona, says although his portraits are faces of individuals, they portray the many. Through them he tries to link the traditional Navajo with the non-Indian.

Beck himself is a link between cultures. He was born in the Black Mesa area between the Hopi Reservation and the Utah border. His mother, a weaver, and his father, a tribal councilman, provided him with an understanding of tribal custom, values and religious beliefs. He also studied at the California College of Arts, focusing on art history, photography and studio art.

In an attempt to fuse these two facets of his life, Beck returned to the reservation and began teaching basic design, studio painting and advanced drawing at the Navajo Community College. He also served as director of the cultural arts department of Many Farms High School in Black Mesa area.

Beck has recently turned to art as a full-time profession. Attempting to expand his art to capture the Navajo in groups and in social situations, he continually reminds us that the human condition is not bound by nationalities.

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