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Signed and titled in the artist’s hand

According to Marie Watkins, “In this Pueblo genre scene, Hunting Son (Juan Gomez), a favorite model, stands quietly in classical contrapposto grasping an unstrung bow in his right hand and an arrow in the left. A Plains dance rattle hangs on the adobe wall and the empty sleeve of the bow box and quiver filled with arrows rests on the banco. The domestic interior is Sharp’s second Taos studio that he completed renovating in 1915. All of the artifacts, including Hunting Son’s mid-thigh cloth shirt and buckskin leggings, a ubiquitous ensemble in Sharp’s paintings, were kept in the studio loft. Sharp displayed Indian artifacts there, readily on hand for artistic props in his compositions.

“In the west room with a Pueblo-style fireplace, Sharp designed an architecturally interesting window on the south wall that was square on the inside and round on the outside. This window and fireplace created a backdrop in many of his paintings.

“The cooler natural light from the window and the warmer artificial light from the unseen kiva create a harmonious relationship of complements. Greens play off the ruddy orange-red tones on the adobe walls and figure’s flesh and clothing. The verdant landscape glimpsed through the open window pulls the eye through the late summer swathe of rich yellow chamisa blooms in Taos Valley, looking south to the blue-tinted Truchas Peaks of the Sangre de Cristo mountain range.

“Hunting Son’s averted gaze cast in shadow, coupled with the sparseness of the room and the perspective of disappearance through the window suggest a quiet melancholy or introspection. The genre scene seems familiar, and yet so unlike our own world. Familiarity joined with loss evokes a nostalgic pleasure for the viewer.”

The Artist
The Collection of H. T. Jones
The Estate of John O. and Jane C. Jones, Nebraska
Private Collection, California

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