Monday, February 28, 2011

Week 5 Blog Post

This watercolor painting is called Black Wolf and the Pomo Girl. According to its artist, Sandy Eastoak, the wolf in the painting is a spirit who is healing the girl from something that is painful, and according to her it’s the way that the Europeans and Americans were killing her people.

Well, I did some research and the Pomo people (they don’t call themselves a “tribe”) are Native Americans who live in Northern California. The black wolf isn’t native to Northern California. But it did come into contact with the Native Americans in Florida. If the Pomo people do in fact, have a connection to canine spirits, it’s that the coyote is their “creator god” in their belief system.

Um, okay. This artist did not do her research. Honestly, it only took about five minutes to learn that, and she likely spent hours on this painting and couldn’t bother to check her facts? She’s says she’s been an artist for 35 years, and she doesn’t do research on her subjects? It’s kind of jarring since her whole website is dedicated to making paintings that honor the Pomo people.  

I chose this painting because I liked the dark tone of it mixed with the cute dancing poses of the wolf and the girl, and I thought the snow was a nice touch that leant a good sense of texture to the piece. Also, the red on the wolf’s clothes added a nice bit of emphasis in an otherwise dark painting. At the time I was hoping it was a historical painting, but it turns out it was made in 2005. Now that I know that the artist doesn’t have her facts straight, I find it kind of a letdown.  

1 comment:

  1. Dang, that is actually really disappointing about the wolf vs. Coyote facts. I think it is easy for a lot of people to take art at face value, to just look at the color and line and composition, and the visual things it easily gives us. I have been guilty of this, and I truthfully haven't gone out of my way to find out more about any of the art pieces in this blog. But art is more than that, that's why we have to take art history, and learn about what the artist was thinking and why a work is important culturally and historically, not just aesthetically. This piece being so factually wrong really lowers the meaning and value of the art. I guess I could make some comments on the actual visuals of the piece, but it just doesn't seem worth it anymore. Very interesting post.