Pecos Shamans

MAH_CS15_150

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 16″ x 20″,  framed. Depicts colors, textures, forms and themes used over 3,000 years ago by artists of Pecos Valley rock shelters. The palette is limited to natural pigments available to prehistoric rock painting: carbon black, red ochre, yellow ochre and shell white, in addition to colors employed for rendering the rock face. Interpreted from photograph by John Hafner, 2001, by permission.

These prehistoric pictographs were probably created over 3,000 years ago by the people then living in the area.  The area is being studied extensively. A number of books, photographs and web sites are available for further understanding.  The archaeological sites are protected and preserved by several cooperating organizations including the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, the Rock Art Foundation, and the Archaeological Institute of America SHUMLA School.  You can access some of these awesome pictographs much more easily and conveniently than John ever did by visiting the Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic Site west of Comstock, Texas.

Acoma Pueblo Church

MAH_CS7_150

18″ x 24″, Acrylic on canvas, framed. Color Study No. 7, 2009, an original painting by Michael Alvin Hill. Repeated elements and symmetries unified by perspective intensifies depth and sense of purposeful strength. 

Interpreted from personal photograph, taken 8/24 1989 with permission of Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico. Ansel Adams first photographed this architectural masterpiece in 1941, from a slightly different perspective. The church was undergoing some renovations at the time I took my own photo. I omitted the scaffolding from this rendering. 

An excellent article on the Acoma Pueblo is written by David Zax in the May 2008 issue of Smithsonian Magazine entitled “Ancient Citadel.”