National Geographic : 1955 Mar
377 National Geographic Photographer David S. Boyer Draughtsmen in the Bureau of Indian Affairs Work Beneath an Indian Mural Allan Hauser, an Oklahoma Apache, painted these horsewomen in the New Interior Building, Washington, D. C. five cannot be located, one is seriously ill, and one is dead. About 40 Indian artists, nearly all men, devote a substantial amount of their time to painting. What of the significance of Indian paint ing to the total American art? There is no better answer than that which David E. Finley, Director of the National Gallery of Art, wrote in his foreword to the catalogue of the Indian art exhibit there: "The paintings in this exhibition, although contemporary in appearance, derive from the ancient Indian tradition, and both in subject matter and manner of execution make a valu able and unique contribution to the body of creative art in America." Indeed, Indian painting from every stand point is inherently and uniquely American. Barely begun to be known and appreciated, it offers unlimited enrichment to the fine arts in every field, and, like any serious painting, to the ethnological and historical record.