Woody Big Bow

Woody Big Bow

My mom just moved into a new house, and while we were moving her, she told me she wasn't planning to hang these paintings in her new place. So I asked for them. 

These are three works by Woody Big Bow, a Kiowa artist my mom befriended when she was in pharmacy school and working at the Indian Health Service in Clinton, Oklahoma. While there, she befriended the artist—she pretty much makes friends wherever she goes—and one day, he pulled up to our house and gave her these three works as a gift. 

Big Bow studied under the famous Oscar Jacobson at the University of Oklahoma. Jacobson is known as the art professor who brought the artists known as the Kiowa Six—Stephen Mopope, Lois Smoky, Spencer Asah, James Auchiah, Jack Hokeah, and Monroe Tsatoke—to the world's attention. Big Bow decorated sets in Hollywood, exhibited in Europe and all over the States, and is best known as the creator of the famous Thunderbird logo for the 45th Infantry Division:

We're not the "art-owning" types, our family. We're middle class, south Oklahoma City people (though I've now migrated to the north side). Still, the thought of these paintings languishing in a closet at my mom's house made me sad, and I'm beyond excited she trusted me with them. Their place of honor—such as it is—is cemented in mine and Bri's home: They're pretty much the first thing you see upon entering our living room.