Lone Eagle is my tribute to all native American peoples and the strength with which they have endured 500 years of unspeakable oppression and suffering. My heart weeps when I read about the atrocities inflicted on the North American indigenous peoples by American European descendants and the US government.
I created this painting a decade before political figures in the US started to acknowledge how many Native Americans were killed. Just recently, in 2019, California governor Gavin Newsome made headlines when he offered an apology to California’s tribes. He said, ”It’s called genocide. That’s what it was, a genocide. No other way to describe it. And that’s the way it needs to be described in the history books.”
I painted a number of levels of meaning and symbology into this painting of a proud Native American man named Lone Eagle. If you look at Lone Eagle’s eyes, you’ll see that he’s not actually looking at the bald eagle at all. Instead, he’s looking past it into some unknown space only he can see. He’s deep in thought pondering the future of his people … wondering if they will survive after all their tribulations.
I used the bald eagle in this painting because it is a sacred symbol of most Native American peoples. It symbolizes courage, wisdom, and strength … attributes that, in my opinion, also apply to Native Americans.
Ironically, in 1782 the US Government adopted the bald eagle as its official symbol because of the same attributes. When hunting, habitat destruction, and DDT poisoning threatened to wipe out the United States’ bald eagle population, the government stepped in with the Bald Eagle Protection Act of 1940 and special federal protections and regulations regarding DDT in the 60’s. Eventually the majestic bald eagle’s status was moved from ”endangered” to ”threatened” and finally removed altogether from the list.
The deepest symbology of this painting regards the special treatment afforded our national treasure, the bald eagle, versus that of another national treasure, our indigenous peoples.
|Reproduction Style||Fine Art Print Canvas Wall Sticker Stretched Canvas Framed Canvas|
|Size||9” x 12” 12” x 16” 18” x 24” 24” x 32”|