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 Dan Viets Lomahaftewa  (1951 - 2005)

About: Dan Viets Lomahaftewa
 

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Lived/Active: Utah/New Mexico/Arizona      Known for: modern Indian symbolism, graphics

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Ad Code: 4
Dan Lomahaftewa
Trails of the Four-Legged
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
Biography from American Eagle Fine Art:
Although born in Phoenix and educated at Arizona State University, the basis of Dan Viets Lomahaftewa's art must be traced to memories of Hopi childhood. Remembrances of everyday ritual and awe-inspiring ceremonies emerges in the artist's choice of imagery, palette and point of view.  Less experientially, but fundamentally equally important, were the stories and guidance from his Choctaw mother and great-grandfather.  Lomahaftewa's dual cultural heritage attuned him to a pan-tribal and ultimately universal aesthetic that informs every stroke of the paintbrush.  Years of singing at native celebrations and travels abroad reinforced this philosophy.  The artist influences of Dan's paintings are as myriad as the personal ones.

At art school he was inspired by the passion of Van Gogh, the surreal atmospheres of Yves Tanguy, and the subconscious symbolism of Miro and Klee.  In the under painting and layering techniques of the old masters the artist found the origins of his own distinctive style.  The richly textured backgrounds of radiant, jewel-like tones achieved with these layering methods provide an otherworthy atmosphere into which Lomahaftewa places his imagery.  A brilliant colourist who eagerly experiments with any medium available, the artist has become equally adept at creating these sensuous backgrounds with the subtle color gradation of monotypes and etchings, the textural quality of collagraphs, or the translucent layers of the ancient wax-based encaustic medium.  Through personal interpretations of pottery designs and ceremonial figures known from Hopi often appear in his paintings, Dan's inquisitive mind is never content with circumscribed subject matters.  In 1989, he was awarded the Utah Art Council's Visual Artist Fellowship, which enabled him to research Utah's ancient petroglyphs which now has expanded to global exploration.  Thus Lomahaftewa's art forms a modern tapestry of contemporary materials, renaissance techniques, ancient imagery, tribal philosophy and the universal human experience as influences.

Dan has become an international artist with a global perspective. Both artist and artwork regularly cross U.S. borders.  With a National Endowment for the Arts travel grant, he was able to travel to Europe, where he has shown his work since 1994.  His work was selected for the Spirit of Native American exhibition, which appeared in six South American countries and Lille, France.  Most recently, he had a solo exhibit at the Institute Franco-American in Rennes, France and a group exhibition at the Far Eastern Art Museum in Khabavorsk, Russia.  Lomahaftewa has twice represented his tribes and his profession as a cultural delegate to international forums in England and France. Lomahaftewa was the featured artist for the 73rd Santa Fe Indian Market. Also, one of his paintings was chosen at the Peabody Museum.  Through purchases, Dan's painting is now a part of the Peabody Essex Museum's collection.

In 1991, he was chosen for the Heard Museum's 5th Biennial Native American Fine Arts Invitational, in Phoenix, Arizona, a show that has proven to be an early source of recognition for some of the best contemporary Native artists working today.  Dan is an artist who contributes his time and art to many arts organizations and museums. He was among a select group of artists chosen to consult with the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of the American Indian design team.  He donated Past Journeys, a limited edition of 75 etchings, to Survival International, a London based group which works to ensure the social and cultural well-being of tribal peoples throughout the world.  Lomahaftewa has served on the Second Circle Board of Atlati, a National Native artist' service organization and two Indian Market boards, Indian Art Northwest and Santa Fe Market.

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