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Quest for the West artist Robert Griffing

by The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art | Sep 26, 2016

Griffing 2016

Robert Griffing

Born 1940 in Linesville, Pennsylvania; lives in Gibsonia, Pennsylvania



The Newcomers

2016, oil on linen, 36 x 30 inches

When white settlers began to migrate into the Ohio country, the Ohio River became a primary artery for travel. Since the Ohio was wider and generally more navigable than most Eastern rivers, canoes and bateaux were soon replaced by larger and more stable flatboats. As more and more newcomers penetrate Indian Territory, Shawnee warriors watch and wonder at the implications this has for their rapidly fading way of life.


GROWING UP IN HISTORY-RICH western Pennsylvania, Robert Griffing roamed the fields and shores of a nearby lake. Indian artifacts that he found during his wanderings led to his fascination with the region’s early history and Indian lore. Following thirty years as a commercial artist, which refined the keen sense of design and composition that prepared him for his fine art career, Griffing turned to painting the Eastern Woodland Indians of the eighteenth century who had intrigued him as a youth.

Today Griffing is known for his finely detailed and historically accurate portrayals of Native Americans living during America’s colonial period. A thorough researcher, he also gains a feeling for his subjects by participating in “living history” reenactments in which he and fellow re-enactors use only authentic gear and weapons. He has the support of Native American groups, many of whom have shown his work in their museums and cultural centers.

Notable Awards and Achievements

2013       Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Quest for the West, Patrons’ Choice Award
2013       Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Quest for the West, Henry Farny Award for Best Painting
2009       Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Quest for the West, Artist of Distinction Award
2008       Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Quest for the West, Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award
2008       Autry Museum of the American West, Masters of the American West, Masters of the American West Purchase Award
2006       Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Quest for the West, Best Painting

Publications

2007       The Narrative Art of Robert Griffing: The Journey Continues, by Timothy J. Todish, Paramount Press
2003       The Art of Robert Griffing: His Journey Into the Eastern Frontier, Paramount Press
2000       The Art of Robert Griffing, by George Irvin, East/West Visions

Gallery Representation

Settlers West Galleries, Tucson, Arizona

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