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His First Hunt / Loren Pahsetopah


His First Hunt was inspired by true stories of Pahsetopah Pi, the grandfather of artist Loren Pahsetopah (Osage). An excellent marksman, Pahsetopah Pi was known to his Osage community as The Boy Hunter. As a result of a mishap with a horse, Pahsetopah Pi lost his hearing, and from that time on communicated only with Indian Sign Language. Pahsetopah Pi was an expert bow hunter, and he passed on his knowledge to children in the community who were interested in learning traditional hunting skills.

The painting portrays Pahsetopah Pi and a young boy riding an American Paint Horse during a winter hunting excursion. Pahsetopah Pi is dressed warmly in a buffalo robe, an otter-fur cap, and buckskin leggings and moccasins. He carries his weapon in a finely adorned buckskin rifle case. The boy is also warmly wrapped in a buffalo robe. A bow case and quiver are fastened to him with a red strap.

—Jordan Poorman Cocker, Henry Luce Foundation Curatorial Scholar for Indigenous Painting Collection Research, 2021

This text was developed from an interview with artist Mike Pahsetopah, Loren Pahsetopah’s nephew, by Jordan Poorman Cocker, July 15, 2021

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His First Hunt
Loren Pahsetopah (Artist)
Native American; Osage
tempera on board
Landscape; single-sided 1.411-1.421mm blue, multilayered board.
Object Type: 
Credit Line: 
Gift of Homer and Ruth Herrington
Accession No: 
Previous Number(s): 
TL1993.355.8; 0227.1785; TL1993.355.8; 20257
Not On View

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