Ledger Art Drawing Class
Learn the techniques and cultural history of ledger drawing. A form of visual storytelling as there was no formal written language to record important life moments. In this two-hour class George Curtis Levi, Southern Cheyenne artist, will take students through his process of how he continues the preservation of his tribal culture, and walk them through the creation of their own drawing with their own story.
What is Ledger Art?
Ledger Art is a unique genre of drawing on paper made by the Plains Indians from around 1860-1900. When higher quality and more convenient art supplies became available after the Indian Wars (1870s), American Indians on the Great Plains started using them to communicate and make records. Petroglyphs (carved into rocks) and pictographs (paintings and drawings) had previously been used. Ledger books were easier to draw on and convenient to travel with. The drawings had a simple style designed for quick understanding. Instead of drawing what they saw, the artists drew the most important parts of the story.
About the Instructor
George Levi is a member of the Southern Cheyenne Tribe and is also Arapaho and Sioux. He was raised in Western Oklahoma. His work includes Cheyenne style ledger drawings on historical paper, watercolors, acrylic paintings, parfleche/rawhide work, and Cheyenne beadwork.
Inspired by the history of the Cheyenne, his work is a continuation of a part of life for him and his People. He states, “My work is about who I am and where I come from. It’s about a history that still lives on.”
Levi’s work is currently in university collections, galleries, and museums across the U.S. and the world. He travels and lectures on Cheyenne history and culture.
Examples of George’s work can be seen in the Red Earth Art Center gallery on display while he and his daughter Halcyon Levi are Artists in Residence through August 16.