Santa Fe Studio - photo by Kitty Leaken

Santa Fe Studio - photo by Kitty Leaken

Rhett lives and works in Alameda, New Mexico. In his thirty plus years as a professional artist, he has found expression in a variety of mediums: hand-woven tapestries, sculpture, drawings, monotypes, paintings in oil and acrylic, writing, acting in films, and developing the motion picture production company, Heap Big Films. Always seeking to expand his visual vocabulary, Rhett consistently experiments with various materials in order to bring more power, life, and intensity to his art. Rhett's broad range of subject matter: the human form, animals, landscapes, icons, archetypes, myth and legend, are depicted realistically to pure abstract, whimsical to mystical. Rhett refers to his work as a visual journal, recording his experiences as a tourist of life. His work is a testament to the deeply powerful symbols found in the well of his Indigenous heritage. His work conveys a universal message, which crosses all cultural boundaries. Although varying greatly in medium and subject matter, all of Rhett's work contains a common thread, intensity of color interwoven with multifaceted intent. His paintings and writing are deeply personal, complex and moving, sometimes disturbingly so. Viewing Rhett's works provides an interactive experience provoking thought, evoking emotion, and leaving a lasting imprint on the psyche. Rhett's work, which has appreciated consistently in value over three decades, attracts a broad range of collectors, veteran as well as neophyte, from entertainment and political personalities, to church parishes and corporations such as CNN.


Contemporary Native American Artists

Rhett's painting "Grass Dance" is featured on cover, and selected works and editorial within the contents.

Contemporary Native American artists have a strong presence in the North American and international art markets including SWAIA's historic and well-attended Indian Market in Santa Fe. This talented group’s work can be found in many annual events, an ever-changing array of fine art galleries, and a number of museums throughout North America. These artists, most based in New Mexico, give visible form to the past, present, and future of American Indian life. In Contemporary Native American Artists, key luminaries of the Native American art world are brought together through stunning photography and intimate portrayals of their lives and art. We are happy to bring you a preview of this important book.

The inception for the book, Contemporary Native American Artists, was in 2008. Authors, Suzanne Deats and Kitty Leaken, have lovingly created a visual feast featuring some of the finest Native American Artists in the Southwest. Rhett's painting Grass Dance is featured on the cover, and several selected works of Rhett's grace the contents of its 184 pages. Other artists in the book include: Jody Naranjo, Kevin Red Star, Ed Archie NoiseCat, Malcolm Furlow, Joe Cajero, Fritz Casuse, Richard Aitson, Adrian Wall, Upton Ethelbah Jr., Jhane Myers, Penny Singer, Dyani Reynolds White Hawk, Melanie Kirk-Lente and Michael Lente.


Museum Exhibitions

2015

  • Tobinodai Historic Site Park Museum; Funabashi, Japan

2013

  • Art of the Native American - Kevin Red Star and His Friends; Owensboro Museum of Fine Art; Owensboro, KY
  • Samara Art Museum; Samara, Russia
  • Togliatti Art Museum; Togliatti, Russia
  • Irkutsk Regional Museum; Irkutsk, Russia

2012

  • Tomsk Regional Art Museum; Tomsk, Russia
  • Art Biennale - Novosibirsk State Museum of Art; Novosibirsk, Russia
  • Ekaterinburg Museum of Fine Arts - Ekaterinburg, Russia

2007

  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; National Museum of China; Beijing, China

1998

  • Culture in Decay - Longyear Museum of Anthropology; Colgate University; Hamilton, NY

1992

  • Native American Youth and the Quincentenary - Presented by the Eight Northern Indian Pueblo Council; Institute of American Indian Art; IAIA Museum; Santa Fe, NM

1991

  • Dogs: Mystical, Magical, Inspirational - Old Pueblo Museum; Tucson, AZ

1988

  • I-40 Connection - Oklahoma Art Center; Oklahoma City, OK
  • Masks and Costumes by Southwestern Artists - Invitational Exhibition; Old Pueblo Museum; Tucson, AZ

1982

  • Images of Ranchos Church - Museum of Fine Arts; Santa Fe, NM

 


Selected Exhibitions

 

2016

  • True West of Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • The Pop-Up Collective - Imperial Building, Albuquerque, NM
  • Art Santa Fe - Santa Fe Convention Center; Santa Fe, NM
  • Native Treasures - Santa Fe Convention Center; Santa Fe, NM
  • Artist Rooms - Nativo Lodge, Albuquerque, NM
  • Rezilience - National Hispanic Cultural Center; Albuquerque, NM 

2015

  • Indigenous Fine Art Market - The Rail Yards, Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • True West of Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • Tobinodai Historic Site Park Museum; Funabashi, Japan
  • Artist Rooms - Nativo Lodge, Albuquerque, NM

2014

  • IFAM Pop-Up Exhibition - San Ysidro Church, Corrales, NM
  • Indigenous Fine Art Market Holiday Showcase - Hotel Andaluz, Albuquerque, NM
  • Indigenous Fine Art Market - The Rail Yards, Santa Fe, NM
  • Native Treasures - Santa Fe, NM

2013

  • Winter Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Art of the Native American - Kevin Red Star and His Friends; Owensboro Museum of Fine Art; Owensboro, KY
  • Santa Fe Indian Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Samara Art Museum; Samara, Russia
  • Octopus Dreams - 36 Contemporary Native American Artists; 516 Arts; Albuquerque, NM
  • Artist Guest Rooms Unveiling: Nativo Lodge, Albuquerque, NM
  • Togliatti Art Museum; Togliatti, Russia
  • Octopus Dreams: 200 Works on Paper by Contemporary Native American Artists; Irkutsk, Russia

2012

  • Tomsk Regional Art Museum; Tomsk, Russia
  • Winter Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Art Biennale - Novosibirsk State Museum of Art; Novosibirsk, Russia
  • Santa Fe Indian Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Ekaterinburg Museum of Fine Arts - Ekaterinburg, Russia
  • Rio Grande Arts & Crafts Festival - Albuquerque, NM

2011

  • Santa Fe Indian Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Alameda Studio Tour - Albuquerque, NM
  • Winter Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Four Winds Gallery - Pittsburgh, PA

2010

  • Winter Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Santa Fe Indian Market - Santa Fe, NM
  • Girls Inc. - Santa Fe, NM
  • Native Modern: One + One = Two - Legends Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • Native Modern: The Cutting Edge - Legends Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM

2009

  • Santa Fe Indian Market: Santa Fe, NM
  • Rhettrospective: Thirty Years of Painting; Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts, Devitt Gallery; Lubbock, TX

2008

  • Winter Market: Legends Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • Solo Exhibition: Legends Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • Indian Market Exhibition; Legends Santa Fe; Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Dana Gallery; Missoula, MT

2007

  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Hong Kong Heritage Discovery Centre; Hong Kong, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Guangzhou City Museum; Guangzhou, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Qingdao Modern Art Centre; Qingdeo, China
  • Rezervations: Solo Indian Market Exhibition; Joyce Robins Gallery; Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Painting Institute, (NGS Exhibit); Shanghai, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Shanxi Art Museum; Shanghai, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Shanxi Art Museum; Xi'an, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Urumqi Art Museum; Urumqi, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; National Museum of China; Beijing, China
  • Out West: The Great American Landscape - Group Exhibition; Meridian International Center; Cafritz Galleries; White-Meyer House; Washington, DC

2006

  • 10 Artist, 10 Years, A Tribute to 10 - Group Exhibition, Gallery Artists; Joyce Robins Gallery; Santa Fe, NM
  • Indigenous - Solo Indian Market Exhibition; Joyce Robins Gallery; Santa Fe, NM

2004

  • An Eclectic Group - Invitational Group Exhibition; Katrina Lasko Gallery; Bernalillo, NM
  • Small Works - Gallery Artists; Kelly Cozart Gallery; Corrales, NM
  • Valentine Exhibition - Gallery Artists; Kelly Cozart Gallery; Corrales, NM

2002

  • New Work - Solo Exhibition; Zane Wheeler Gallery; Taos, NM

2000

  • The Dreamland Paintings - Solo Exhibition; Deloney/Newkirk Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
  • Indian Market Exhibition - Gallery Artists; Blue Rain Gallery; Taos, NM
  • Blue Rain Gallery in San Francisco - Gallery Artist; Blue Rain Gallery; San Francisco, CA
  • Messengers - Group Exhibition; Gallery 10; Scottsdale, AZ

1999

  • Bringing in the Millennium - Gallery Artist; Deloney/Newkirk Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
  • Medicine Paintings - Group Exhibition; Gallery 10; Santa Fe, NM
  • Standing Room Only - Group Exhibition; Gallery 10; Scottsdale, AZ
  • International Exhibition - Group Exhibition; Montague Art Galleries Inc.; Gallery Art 54 SoHo; New York, NY

1998

  • Culture in Decay - Solo Exhibition; Longyear Museum of Anthropology; Colgate University; Hamilton, NY
  • Navajo - Solo Exhibition; Deloney/Newkirk Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM

1997

  • Twentieth Century Artifacts - 2 Person Indian Market Exhibition / Rhett Lynch & Robert Mirabal; Deloney/Newkirk Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM
  • Old Dog, New Tricks - Solo Exhibition; Deloney/Newkirk Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM

1996

  • Indian Market Exhibition - Solo Exhibition; Waxlander-Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM

1995

  • Indian Market Exhibition - Solo Exhibition; Waxlander-Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM

1994

  • Indian Market Exhibition - Solo Exhibition; Waxlander-Khadoure Fine Art; Santa Fe, NM

1993

  • New Works - Solo Exhibition; Friesen Gallery; Sun Valley, ID

1992

  • New Works - Solo Exhibition; Friesen Gallery; Seattle, WA
  • Native American Youth and the Quincentenary - Group Exhibition; Presented by the Eight Northern Indian Pueblo Council; Institute of American Indian Art, IAIA Museum; Santa Fe, NM
  • New Paintings and Monotypes - Solo Exhibition; Jeannie Denholm; Laguna Beach, CA
  • Paintings and Prints - Solo Exhibition; Stan Berning Gallery; Santa Fe, NM
  • New Works - Solo Exhibition; Friesen Gallery; Sun Valley, ID
  • Important New Works - Solo Exhibition; J. Cacciola Galleries; New York, NY

1991

  • Inaugural Gallery Exhibition - Friesen Gallery; Seattle, WA
  • Dogs: Mystical, Magical, Inspirational - Invitational Group Exhibition; Old Pueblo Museum; Tucson, AZ
  • Rising Stars - Group Exhibition; J. Cacciola Galleries; New York, NY

1990

  • Dogs, Masks, Fire and Women - Solo Exhibition; Lone Pine Gallery; Irvine, CA

1998

  • The Monotype - Group Exhibition; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Scottsdale, AZ
  • New Works - Solo Exhibition; Prairie Lee Gallery; Chicago, IL
  • The Reflected Image - Group Exhibition of Self-Portraits; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Scottsdale, AZ
  • New Works - Solo Exhibition; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Santa Fe, NM
  • Monothon - Group Exhibition; College of Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • Animals - Group Exhibition; College of Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • New Tricks - Solo Exhibition; Anne Reed Gallery; Sun Valley, ID

1988

  • Los Angels International Art Expo - Group Exhibition; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Los Angeles, CA
  • I-40 Connection - Invitational Group Exhibition; Oklahoma Arts Center; Oklahoma City, OK
  • Dogs, Hearts, Sharks and Women - Solo Exhibition; Patton/Duval Gallery; Los Angeles, CA
  • Masks and Costumes by Southwest Artist - Invitational Group Exhibition; Old Pueblo Museum; Tucson, AZ
  • Exhibition of Gallery Artists - Group Exhibition; Anne Reed Gallery; Sun Valley, ID
  • Summer Garden, Different Perspectives - Group Exhibition; Anne Reed Gallery; Sun Valley, ID
  • Chicago International Art Expo - Group Exhibition; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Chicago, IL
  • Dog Meets Dog Again - Solo Exhibition; Anne Reed Gallery; Sun Valley, ID
  • Monothon - Group Exhibition; Collage of Santa Fe; Santa Fe, NM
  • Dog Meets Dog - Solo Exhibition; Anne Reed Gallery; Sun Valley, ID
  • 4 New Gallery Artists - Group Exhibition; Prairie Lee Gallery; Chicago, ID

1987

  • Gone to the Dogs - Solo Exhibition; Mill Street Gallery; Aspen, CO
  • New Works - Solo Exhibition; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Santa Fe, NM
  • The Modern Mask - Group Exhibition; Elaine Horwitch Galleries; Scottsdale, AZ
  • Inaugural Exhibition of Gallery Artist - Group Exhibition; Patton/Duval Gallery; Los Angeles, CA
  • Invitational Exhibition - Group Exhibition; Lubbock Arts Festival; Lubbock Memorial Civic Center; Lubbock, TX

1986

  • Taos Comes to Austin - Group Exhibition; El Taller Gallery; Austin, TX
  • Neo-Salsa - Group Exhibition; Armory for the Arts; Santa Fe, NM
  • Monotype Frontiers - Group Exhibition; El Taller Gallery; Taos, NM
  • New Mexico Color and Light - Group Exhibition; Stables Art Center; Taos, NM
  • The Human Figure - Group Exhibition; Stables Art Center; Taos, NM
  • Vistas - Group Exhibition; Stables Art Center; Taos, NM
  • Invitational Exhibition - Group Exhibition; Lubbock Arts Festival; Lubbock Memorial Civic Center; Lubbock, TX

1985

  • Invitational Exhibition - Group Exhibition; Lubbock Arts Festival; Lubbock Memorial Civic Center; Lubbock, TX

1984

  • Landscapes, Flowers and Women - Solo Exhibition; Design Today; Lubbock, TX
  • Invitational Exhibition - Group Exhibition; Lubbock Arts Festival; Lubbock Memorial Civic Center; Lubbock, TX

1983

  • Dallas International Art Expo - Solo Exhibition; Dallas Convention Center; Dallas, TX

1982

  • Images of Ranchos Church - Invitational Group Exhibition; Museum of Fine Arts; Santa Fe, NM
  • The Dancers - Solo Exhibition; First Federal Savings and Loan; Lubbock, TX

 


Collections

  • Albuquerque International Balloon Museum - Albuquerque, NM
  • Oklahoma Arts Center - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Jesuit Museum - Dallas, Texas
  • CNN - Atlanta, Georgia
  • Danny Sullivan - Indianapolis 500 Winner
  • Steven Forest - Author and Astrologer
  • Lee Trevino - Professional Golfer
  • Salley Kellerman - Actor
  • Bridget Nelson - Actor
  • John Nichols - Author

Publications

  • Pasatiempo - Rhett Lynch: Indigenous Transcendence; July 23, 2016 
  • Albuquerque The Magazine - A Sense of Belonging; July 2014; p.190 & 192
  • New Mexico Magazine - Going Places / Suite Dreams; August 2013; p.20, 21, 22 , 24
  • Two Worlds Theater and Film - Take Five, This Months Featured Artist, Rhett Lynch; May 2013
  • Inhabitants of Burque - April 10, 2013
  •  New Mexico Journey - Cover Illustration by Rhett Lynch; January/Febuary 2013
  • SWAIA Official Indian Market Guide - Contemporary Native American Artist; August 2012; p.113
  • Contemporary Native American Artists - by Kitty Leaken and Suzanne Deats, published by Gibbs Smith
  •  Navajo Times - Artist Turns to Film for Personal Story; July 14; 2011; p.C-3
  • High Desert Dog - Local Artist, October / November 2010; p.6,36
  • China Daily - Cowboy Land Comes to China; April 7, 2007
  • Salt Lake Tribune - Far East sees the West; March 2007
  • PR Newswire, United Business Media - Santa Fe, a Year-Round Destination for Art Collectors, Celebrates 10th Anniversary of ARTfeast; Outstanding Opportunities to View and Acquire Fine Art With Four-Days of Gallery Visits, Auctions, and Exclusive Home Tours. February 2007
  • New Mexico Business Weekly - Santa Fe, a Year Round Destination for Art Collectors, Celebrates 10th Anniversary of ARTfeast; January 16, 2007
  •  ARTsmart - Santa Fe, a Year Round Destination for Art Collectors, Celebrates 10th Anniversary of ARTfeast; January 16, 2007
  •  Rio Rancho Observer - Lawsuit Tossed Out Against Rio Grande Studios, by Tom Treweek; 2007
  • SouthwestART - New Mexico, Best of the West / Comeback Time; August 2006; p.90
  •  THE Magazine - Rhett Lynch: Indigenous; August 2006, p.49
  •  Confessions of a Madwoman - Cover Art by Rhett Lynch; July 1, 2005
  • Albuquerque Tribune - "Art for Hunters", A Sea of Treasures", by Nancy Salem; Sunday, October 15, 2004
  •  News From Indian Country - Rhett Lynch, Navajo Artist, by Marijo Moore; March 31, 2000
  • SouthwestART - Profiles; January 1999; p.99
  • Native Artists - Visiting, by Michael Hice; Summer 1999; p.42-44
  • Syracuse-Herald American/Stars - Small Show Explores How A Culture Decays, by Sherry Chayat; November 22, 1998; p.17
  • The Oneida Onyota Aka, Oneida Indian Nation News - Works of Navajo Artist at Colgate University; November 18, 1998; p.7
  •  The Colgate Maroon-News - Native American Artist Explores Culture in Longyear Exhibit, by Marissa Hannan; Thursday, November 5, 1998
  • Syracuse New Times - Around the Region, by Allen Czelusniak; November 4-11, 1998; p.15
  • The Colgate Maroon-News - Native American Explores Culture in Longyear Exhibit, by Marissa Hannan; October 30, 1998; p.18
  • Tribune - 'Culture in Decay' on Exhibit at Colgate University; Navajo artist will lecture as part of exhibition; October 28, 1998; p.20-21
  • Syracuse Herald American - "Culture in Decay" to open at Colgate; October 25, 1998; P.18
  • The Colgate Maroon-News - Arts & Features, Arts in Brief, Navajo Artist to Lecture as Part of Exhibition Opening; October 23, 1998; p.15
  • The Mid-York Weekly - Culture in Decay; Installation and Paintings by Rhett Lynch; October 22, 1998
  • Chittenango-Bridgeport Times, Chittenango, New York - 'Culture in Decay' on exhibit at Colgate University, Navajo Artist will lecture as part of exhibition opening Oct. 28; October 21, 1998
  • ALANA Cultural Center Calendar - October 1998
  • The Santa Fe New Mexican, Pasatiempo - Handmade flutes will inspire canine portraits, Rhett, Mirabal fuse music, paints, by Emily Van Cleve; August 15, 1997
  • Sun Valley Magazine - Gallery Tours, by Norma Douglas, November 1988; p.19

 


Press Releases

Press Release for 2006 Indian Market Exhibition at Joyce Robins Gallery by Susan McGarry

Rhett Lynch Returns to the Joy of Doing

Rhett Lynch’s persona often appears in a tailored suit. “While living in New York City, I met a professional designer of men’s clothing and started painting his suits, sort of like Jim Dine’s bathrobes,” Lynch relates. “At the time I was also painting dogs, the four-legged kind, so I decided to put a dog’s head on a suit. I still love doing them—they’ve become autobiographical and a visual diary of my journey through life.”

Much has happened in Lynch’s life since his years in New York. He lived in Arizona, moved to Los Angeles, CA, and then decided to take a three-month road trip.  “It lasted a year and a half,” he says with a laugh. “My three dogs and I lived out of the car and saw a lot of the country.” When Lynch returned to New Mexico, he learned that his mother was dying of ALS. For the next two and a half years, he cared for her, awakening to the meaning of compassion and the joy of living up to the end.

All of these experiences lead to Lynch’s first solo show in more than five years. “I was asked to do a show last year in Taos,” he explains. “I wasn’t ready then … but I am so ready now.”

Joyce Robins, who is hosting Lynch’s show during Santa Fe Indian Market, says that she is thrilled to be representing him. “Rhett’s work fits comfortably in the gallery, and like many of the artists here, his paintings are process-oriented and his message uniquely personal.”

For Indigenous, Lynch will have approximately twenty canvases, several of which are from his newest series called Prayers for Healing.  Labor intensive, the paintings are meditative mantras for the Navajo artist, who builds “prayer ties” in traditional fashion, using strips of fabric filled with thoughts of hope as well as sacred objects such as tobacco and sage. He sews the prayer ties to the canvas before adding numerous layers of acrylics so that they incorporate into the surface.  Lynch begins these paintings, as he does the majority of his works, by covering the canvas with gold foil. The foil creates both textures as well as a translucency as he applies layer after layer of pigments. By finish, the surface resembles colored leather.

Lynch says he chose the title Indigenous for both personal and socio-political reasons. “Indigenous peoples around the globe are raising their voices, perhaps more than ever before, and they are being heard.  I’m also raising my voice by getting my head out of the way so that my heart can speak.  I feel as if I’m returning to that wonderful box of crayons with a sharpener that turned me on to art when I was as a kid.”

Lynch, who grew up in Lubbock, TX, and studied at Texas Tech University, says that he considers himself an artist who “happens to be Navajo,” adding that he never had the reservation experience. Nonetheless, he draws substantially from the spirituality that nature provides, especially in his home/studio in Albuquerque’s North Valley, where he raises goats, keeps bees, takes daily walks along the Rio Grande and revels in sunrises.  “In this busy, noisy world, it is critical to be still, which is the best medicine,” he concludes. “My paintings record my journey to reconnect to the stillness that heightens the joy of doing.”