OKLAHOMA CITY - Mike Larsen, award winning Chickasaw artist, has been named the 2006 Red Earth Honored One. Larsen receives the award for his dedication and skill as a Native American artist.
The Red Earth Honored One recognizes a Native American master visual artist whose support of Native American art has been substantial throughout his/her life. It honors an artist who has positively influenced the Native American artistic community as a whole, and who has a continuing involvement, activity, and participation in art. The Honored One is an artist who embraces and embodies the collective wisdom of their cultural experience.
Larsen is best known for his 1991 mural “Flight of Spirit”, a tribute to five Native American ballet dancers, which was unveiled as a permanent fixture in the Oklahoma State Capitol. His artwork and mural have been featured by CNN and others.
Shamans, healers, brave warriors and earth mothers: these are the focus and purpose of painting for Larsen. His artistic style is very expressive and the attire of his subjects is always historically accurate. Larsen's paintings achieve his intent of conveying emotion, invoking feeling, and creating hope. He first embarked on his painting career at the age of 19 with landscapes, but the creation of these distant views has long since given way to the exploration of powerful figures with distinctive and mythical messages for men and women of all races. Born in Dallas in 1944, he grew up on the plains of Oklahoma and Texas, with his mother and stepfather. He began painting in earnest at Amarillo Junior College. Thereafter, he continued his art education at the University of Houston.
Surrounded always by his wife, Martha, and their three children, Mike continues to create paintings that mix mystery and reality in magnified bodies that transfix viewers with passionate feelings. His paintings radiate the essence of spirituality and creativity, always reflecting his dedication to the subject as well as to the method of the medium.