Paintings honor Native American leaders

A new art show at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum brings viewers close up to some of history’s most iconic Native American leaders.

Santa Fe artist Narrie Toole’s paintings pay tribute to Native American culture, spirituality and leadership. The show, “Narrie Toole: Honoring the Past, Bridging Cultures and Sharing Wisdom,” is on display beginning Aug. 12, and an artist’s reception is 4-7 p.m. on Aug. 25. The reception is free and will include refreshments.

The 16 oil paintings – some on canvas and some on linen – are large, several of them 36 inches by 60 inches. They are bold and intense.

“I paint to honor the history of Native Americans and to show how bridging their cultural lineages and sharing ancestral wisdom and traditions is illuminating for all humanity,” said the artist.

Toole created a series of paintings called “Faces of Our Fathers,” individuals who were leaders and forward thinkers who provided spiritual guidance and skilled negotiations as part of protecting the quality of life of their families and tribe. Five paintings from the series are in the exhibit.

Most of the paintings are close-ups of the leaders’ faces.

“By painting and attempting to capture each of these individuals’ personalities, I can provide the moment for viewers of the show to focus, listen and see,” she said.

The show will be in the Museum’s Arts Corridor through Dec. 4. For more information, call (575) 522-4100. The Museum is located at 4100 Dripping Springs Road in Las Cruces.

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