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Oscar Howe

Tri-State Artists (IA/NE/SD) and Upper Midwestern Artists | 1915–1983 | Joe Creek, South Dakota

Oscar Howe was born in Joe Creek, South Dakota on the Crow Creek Sioux Reservation. In the 1930s, he was employed by the WPA and painted murals for the municipal auditorium in Mobridge, South Dakota. From 1957 to 1983, he was professor of art at University of South Dakota. Early in his tenure as professor, he led the fight to convince both Native Americans and the art establishment that Native American artists could break free of “traditional” styles and materials to work in the manner of other contemporary artists.