''Watchful Waiting / Francisco Martinez'', signed lower right: J.H. Sharp, titled and numbered verso: 10, titled again on the canvas surround verso, oil on canvas, 16'' H x 20'' W, est: $90,000/120,000
Note: Joseph Henry Sharp, considered the ''spiritual father'' of the Taos Society of Artists, made his first fateful trip to New Mexico in 1883. Growing up in Ohio, he was fascinated by Native Americans from a young age and never lost interest in the American west during his extensive years of study in Europe and years teaching and working as an illustrator in Cincinnati. After numerous trips west, Sharp went to live there permanently first in Montana where he worked as an artist and illustrator recording the Northern Plains Indians and then finally to Taos in 1912. In Taos, Sharp was a charter member of the Taos Society of Artists founded the same year as his arrival. The present work depicts Taos Indian Francisco Martinez in profile. Martinez is painted as an individual with careful attention to clothing detail and Sharp's signature use of light which enhances the figure's features. Martinez went on to be Chief of the Taos Pueblo and he and family members were regular subjects for the artist. Alternative title and inscription possibly in the artist's hand on the original cardboard backing: Watchful Waiting (Bawling Deer) / He is now War Chief at Taos Pueblo 1946. Provenance: Estate, Banning, CA
Visual: Generally good condition. Blacklight: No evidence of restoration under blacklight.