Friday, January 6, 2012

H.C Westermann, scuptor, printmaker, acrobat

The original "Hairy Who" member, H. C. Westermann.  I used to see his work a lot int he 1970s.  Since then I will find a rare piece at some odd museum.  I just saw a lovely piece at Indiana Museum of Art.  We also have a great one at our own University of Arizona museum.  Look at that "six-pack".  Apparently he made a living for a while before he made art and studied at the Chicago Art Institute.  Hope you can enjoy the work as much as I do.



Thanks for the wonderful photo of Cliff. He was an NDN artist at a time when to identify as such would have caused him to be patronizingly marginalized as a minor ethnic curiosity only. Bernard Langlais was another such artist although he much more openly embraced his heritage. Both men married beautiful white women at a time when inter-racial marriage was still illegal most US places. Neither artist had children. I often wonder if this were because of the recognition of how all consuming an art career is, or was it also not wishing to inflict pain on bastard breed offspring that our culture would have done to them at that time? I never asked either when they were alive. Both artists and their wives were absolutely delightful to be around.

Anonymous said...

FYI: H.C. Westermann was not part of the "Hairy Who" artists, but did impact them in very important ways. Also Cliff did have a son from a marriage prior to Joanna Beall. I'm also confused about your referring to him as NDN; why do you believe that to be the case? Respectfully sent.

Non-Indigenous Woman said...

My apologies to H.C. Westermann and his admirers. Thank you so much for this correction. Another example of my poor art history background. Just read that W.C. Westermann was part of the "Monster Roster". Apparently there were 3 distinct groups ("Monster Roster, The Hairy Who and the Chicago Imagists". I think I had always viewed all the Imagists together. Love them all, hoping to view the new film that was released about the Hairy Who.
It seems that both writers of the above comments knew much about him and perhaps were acquaintances. Thank you again for the notes.

Non-Indigenous Woman said...

Typo correction on previous comment:
Incorrect W.C. Westermann. Should read H.C. Westermann.