Adagio Galleries


R. C. Gorman
R. C. Gorman
R.C. Gorman, considered by many the premier artist among American Indians, is difficult to place in a neat and tidy category. "Gorman", as he is generally and popularly known, enjoyed being the center of controversy as much as he enjoyed being a Navajo. Many critics called him brilliant, the star of the Navajo Nation, a genius. Most agree that his talent was universally outstanding.

Born on July 26th, 1931, near Canyon de Chelly, Arizona and raised in a hogan on the Navajo Reservation, he became one of the Southwest’s best known late 20th century artists. His uninhibited free-flowing style and vivid color sense are what catches and holds the eye of the beholder. The New York Times described him as "the Picasso of American Indian artists".

Full-bodied Indian women became his trademark. Of this subject matter, he said: "I choose models who have full bodies--something you can put your two arms around and feel a real woman. I like the ample figure because it fills space softly". Gorman went through many phases in his painting: his landscape series, surreal series, pottery, rug and mask series. All reflect the cultural traditions of his Navajo heritage. Extensions of his mastery include etchings, silk screens, sculpture, ceramics and tapestries. He was quoted as saying that these are "A depiction of something that is going away and won’t return. These are fragments of a beauty that was".

To view the works of R. C. Gorman, click here