Santiago, Roseta – “Taos Daughter”, Oil on Canvas, (36″ x 36″)
Roseta Santiago is known for her dynamic realistic paintings. This painting is entitled, “Taos Daughter“. It is an oil on canvas. The painting depicts a girl in a blanket surrounded by flowers. The piece is signed, “Santiago”. Roseta said of this painting:
“This painting is of a young woman from Taos who’s father is a silvermsmith at the Pueblo. He suggested her as a model. It is an unusual painting for me in terms of the background. I typically like to focus the model’s face and things about her that are important. However, backgrounds are clue to what I’m thinking about. I This case the unusual background the color of the canvas is the late autumn chamisa. Chamisa are plants that grow all over New Mexico and turn a yellowish color in the fall (see last photo). I decided to use the background to depict the chamisa behind the model. She is wearing a vintage Navajo blanket.”
History reverberates in each of her paintings. Roseta Says of her art:
“The things that inspire me are the historical artifacts, historical people. My models are people with whom I spend time and who have something to reveal. It’s always about inner beauty. It’s mainly the interior of a person or thing. I can almost experience a pot being made when I paint it. I just see what the potter went through.”
She is best known for her luminous still life and figurative paintings of Native peoples and artifacts portrayed with dramatic lighting, Santiago is a master at chiaroscuro. She uses mostly living models, although a few historic people taken from photographs weave their way into her art. She says one of her goals is to honor Native American culture through her portrayals in her art.