Currently reading : George Catlin
The artwork of George Catlin bears as much significance aesthetically as it does anthropologically for its time. Known for his predominant realism-inspired approach, he documented extensively the Native Peoples of Northern, Southern and Central America during the early 19th century. From initiation rites to animal studies, hunting scenes to landscapes, Catlin witnessed it all and re-interpreted it with as much grace as genuine interest. His love for the then declining and relatively untouched Native world has allowed these lost cultures to be preserved and catalogued within his art: in many cases acting as a sole reference to some of the rarest sights witnessed by an outsider. Many of those he depicted were deeply rooted around traditional means of adornment and modification of the body for ritual, beauty and religious appeasement. Body suspensions, multiple piercings, stretchings, body painting and tattooing were all commonplace and staple aspects of which is now a diminishing or in some cases, a lost Native life.