My paintings are interpretations based upon the nomadic tribes of the 19th century American Plains. The subjects are a variety
of visual references and my imagination. I am not a historian, nor an ethnologist. Being of non-native blood, without personal
history, it would be presumptuous to portray the subject I paint from any other view than as an artist with an innate interest
in the world’s indigenous cultures. I purposely do not denote a tribal affiliation to the majority of my subjects, rather,
I attempt to give the paintings an authentic appearance, provoke interest, satisfy my audience’s sensibilities of the
subject without the constraints of having to adhere to historical accuracy.
My work is fueled by an inherent interest in the Indigenous Peoples of the Earth. The current images evolve from the history,
ceremony, mythology, and spirituality of the Native American. The ultra-detailed interpretations examine the inseparable relationship
between the Indian and his natural world, reflecting a culture that had no hard line between the sacred and the mundane.
Each painting functions on the premise that all natural phenomena have souls independent of their physical beings. Under such
a belief, the wearing of sacred objects were a source of spiritual power. Any object- a stone, a plait of sweet grass, a part
of an animal, the wing of a bird- could contain the essence of the metaphysical qualities identified to the objects and desired
by the Native American. This acquisition of "Medicine", or spiritual power, was central to the lives of the Indian. It provided
the conduit to the unseen forces of the universe which predominated their lives.
I attempt to give the viewer of my work a sense of what these sacred objects meant to the wearer; when combined with the proper
ritual or prayer there would be a transference of identity. More than just aesthetic adornment, it was an outward manifestation
of their identity and their inter-relatedness with their natural and spiritual world.
The methodology of my style involves the painstaking layering of transparent washes over multiple underpaintings. This technique
results in canvases that are detailed in defined textures and surfaces. With the deliberate precision given to each work,
I produce a very limited number of paintings each year.
With the technological revolution of the digital printing industry and the advent of high quality, archival inks, the "giclée"
is able to fathfully reproduce the details, tonality, and subtle nuances of the original work. These limited edition prints,
available on both canvas and watercolor paper, have made the ownership of a Sattler work of art more affordable and accessible
to the collector.
Kirby Sattler art studio
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