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The Warning

by Howard Terpning
Western Artist Estate
25" x 31" inches
Status: 
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Framed Size: 35" x 41" inches

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This painting was chose for the cover of the catalog, for my one-man show at the Gilcrease Museum. I had taken some photographs of luxurious cool yellow-green grass at Yellowstone. I was intrigued by the way this grass sort of disappeared into the forested background. As I moved around, snapping frames for reference, I could imagine 1840s Blackfeet Indians emerging from the forest, but partly hidden by the tall grass. I composed some sketches. Well, years went by. And the idea returned. It would be an opportunity to present numerous, subtle clues to the identity of these individuals as old-time Blackfeet their hair style, the knife scabbard, their ornamentation. Originally I had two men on horseback. Then I thought it would be more interesting to have one man dismounted. I wanted to make that pinto horse's head almost jump out of the canvas, out of that extreme contrast, and that's what gives the painting such a three-dimensional quality. Obviously, these Indians are starting at something. But at what? Almost as an afterthought I painted in a Crow lance, dressed in war medicine, thrust into the earth as a warning.

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Order today to receive Sioux Flag Carrier, 16" x 18" an exclusive and limited SOLD OUT AT PUBLISHER gift with purchase. The flag, or banner staff, was made with eagle feathers. The flag was usually carried by the man who rode near the war leader so that when in a battle the members of the war party could locate the leader to obtain his orders. This flag was most useful in larger engagements. In any small skirmish between war tribes, it was every man for himself.