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 Kirby Sattler, Painter of fine art originals and limited edition
KirbyKirby Sattler has managed to achieve such effects without much formal art education. He attended Arizona State University for a year but quickly realized that he didn't want to learn to paint in another person's style. Kirby found refuge as caretaker at a friend's ranch in Steamboat Springs. Virtually alone on the ranch without the distractions of urban living, he spent his nights painting and discovered his true calling in life.

Born in 1950, Kirby began painting professionally in his twenties. Sattler’s portraits have evolved over thirty years of perfecting the technique. He is not mainly concerned with being historically accurate, but instead tries to portray the spirituality of the sacred objects in his pictures, and the emotions behind the face paint. His art interpretations give a feeling of authenticity without being specific to a particular tribe.

Though Sattler himself is not a Native American, his art evolves from the history, ceremony, mythology, and spirituality of the Plains Indians. His detailed interpretations examine the inseparable relationship between the native people of the plains, and the natural world, reflecting a culture that had no hard line between the sacred and the mundane. Although Sattler is meticulous about creating true-to-life depictions of the clothing, artifacts and traditions of Native Americans, he is most concerned with capturing a sense of spirituality and reverence.

Kirby Sattler has developed his painting into a distinctive style of realism. The methodology involves the painstaking layering of transparent washes over multiple underpaintings. This technique results in canvases that are rich in detail, defined textures and surfaces. With the deliberate precision given to each work, he produces a very limited number of paintings each year.

This article was published on Friday 14 March, 2008.
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