Dyani White Hawk (Sicangu Lakota) was born in Madison, Wisconsin and resides in St. Paul, Minnesota. She received a MFA in painting from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and BFA from the Institute of American Indian Arts. Her painting earned the “Best of Classification” award at the 2011 Santa Fe Indian Art Market and a First Place in painting at the 2011 Northern Plains Indian Art Market.
White Hawk’s exactingly executed paintings often combine the Lakota art of quill work with strong lines that echo blanket and moccasin patterns. Often the scale of her work, large canvases as well as small or “extreme close-ups”, creates an interesting confusion between landscape and object or between pattern and figure. Her care in using her abstraction to bring American Indian tradition into a dynamic contemporary context reveals a powerful intellect and a remarkably original artist.
As a woman of Lakota and European ancestry my life experiences have been a continual negotiation of both Western and Indigenous educations, value systems, and worldviews. Through the amalgamation of symbols and motifs derivative of both Lakota and Western abstraction, my artwork examines, dissects, and patches back together pieces of each in a means to provide an honest representation of self and culture. --- Dyani White Hawk
Dyani White Hawk has exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, the Indian Arts and Culture Museum, the Legends Santa Fe, and Shiprock Santa Fe galleries, Santa Fe NM. Her work is in the collection of the Akta Lakota Museum, the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Wisconsin Union Art Collection and the Robert Penn Collection of Contemporary Northern Plains Indian Art of the University of South Dakota.