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Howard Terpning - Mystic Power of the War Shield -  MASTERWORK CANVAS EDITION Published by the Greenwich Workshop

          Mystic Power of the War Shield
by Howard Terpning


Limited Edition of: 55
Image Size: 50"w x 38"h.
Published: January 2013

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Because warriors depended upon the shield to protect them in battle, they went to great lengths not only to construct it as strongly as possible but also to have protective spiritual powers imparted to it. Here, Cheyenne gallop at full speed, shaking their war shields at the sun, then leaning down to brush them against the grass, invoking medicine believed to turn away enemy bullets and arrows.

A warrior might spend months making a shield, working and reworking until he was satisfied that it was done just right. Often he decorated it with symbols of his own personal medicine, given him by a spirit guide. He was likely to ring it with feathers and charms. When he galloped forward in a charge, the feathers on his shield, as well as any tied in his hair or his ponyís mane and tail, would stream in the wind and make him appear even fiercer than he might have been. He had a fine sense of pageantry and of the psychological effect it might have upon the enemy who faced the charge.

The shield was jealously guarded against anything that might diminish its spiritual power. Its loss to an enemy was regarded as particularly dangerous because the enemy might use its magic against its owner and those around him.

Howard Terpning
Quite simply, Howard Terpning is one of the most lauded painters of Western art. His awards are so numerous and he is honored with them so often, that to list them would require changing the count every few months. To name three would be to cite the highest prizes awarded to Western art: countless awards from the Cowboy Artists of America, the Hubbard Art Award for Excellence, the National Academy of Western Artís Prix de West and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Autry National Center. Why such praise? Passion, compassion, devotion and respect for his subject matter, extraordinary talent in palette and brushstroke, an exceptional ability to evoke emotion both in his paintings and from those viewing them ó all this and more has made Terpning the "Storyteller of the Native American." Born in Illinois and educated at the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts and the American Academy of Art, he first gained attention with his captivating advertising and story illustrations. Film fans praised his movie posters for such classics as The Sound of Music, Dr. Zhivago and the re-issue of Gone with the Wind. But his love of the West and Native American traditions saw his transition to fine art. Terpning is an Emeritus member of the Cowboy Artists of America, active for 22 years, during which time he was presented with a total of 41 awards. His book, The Art of Howard Terpning won the Wrangler "Outstanding Art Book" award from the National Cowboy Hall of Fame. Terpning was recently honored with a one-man show at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art in Indianapolis, Indiana featuring 30 of the artistís most distinguished works where he was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award. This career milestone was further celebrated with the publication of Spirit of the Plains People (2001, Greenwich Workshop Press). Terpning is the recipient of the Autry National Center, 2005 Masters of the American West Thomas Moran Memorial Award, given in recognition of exceptional artistic merit for painting.


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