Mixed media (charcoal and white gouache highlights) drawing of an American military man, in formal U.S. Army uniform, 14 1/2" by 11 1/2" (20 1/2" by 17" as framed), signed at lower right by the well known artist and illustrator associated with New Mexico and the Southwest, BETTINA STEINKE (1913-1999). Steinke's oils and drawings of native Americans, cowboys and other figures of the southwestern part of the country can bring into five figures. Born in Maine, she was educated in art in the New York area, obtaining illustration assignments as early as the 1930's. After the war she moved west, first to Oklahoma and finally to Taos, New Mexico, where at mid century she was a mentor to a new generation of Taos artists. In the early 1970's she was becoming nationally recognized, at venues like the Cowboy Hall of Fame, and in publications such as Southwest Art. Her photographer husband Don Blair sold her works from a gallery on Canyon Road in Santa Fe. Today her paintings sell for tens of thousands of dollars at the finest galleries of Santa Fe. This drawing is in excellent condition. I have seen countless prints of her work over the years, but her original work must be scarce; this is the first work I have encountered that was not in an auction or high end gallery. Allow for reflections in some images.
BETTINA STEINKE (1913-1999) original charcoal drawing portrait by noted Southwest artist and illustrator