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Quiet Strength

Quiet Strength

Friends –

There was simplicity in painting the features of someone as beautifully powerful as is Deb Haaland. But I found much indecision in the symbolism to use in her surroundings. I agonized over this for quite some time and had a mis-start or two before paint began to make sense.

In the end I settled on a simple painting using few colors and no white. A bit of research gave an interpretation of symbols, including the Zia Pueblo sun. According to former Zia Pueblo Gov. Peter Pino* their sun has rays that point four different directions. The southerly direction points to the "mountains that we as individuals must climb and the rays to the east represent 'ourselves' – our heart, our mind, our body, our spirit." I used those.

Deb Haaland wore a dragonfly earring when she was sworn in as our Secretary of the Interior and wore a beautiful skirt of colored ribbons. I took the liberty of representing her skirt of many colors in this painting with the rays that exude from her quiet and strong presence.

And finally, butterflies embellished the ribbon skirt which seemed profoundly important, positive, and comforting. With Deb Haaland now the U.S. Secretary of Interior, I feel both positive and comforted.

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