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According to the artist, “My model for this painting was a young Navajo girl, a student at Brigham Young University, who is shown grinding sage on a buffalo hide. Several summers ago, on the outskirts of Cody, Wyoming, she and a number of other Indians re-created an early native village to demonstrate the manner in which Indians lived before the arrival of Columbus. Charging admission, they taught such crafts as sage-grinding, cooking, and the making of weapons—all very well done. It was a rare opportunity for me to pose them and to produce a series of paintings. Before the summer ended, they suddenly disappeared, and I have not seen them since.”

James Bama, The Western Art of James Bama Enlarged Edition (New York, NY: Bantam Books, Inc., 1980), number 49, illustrated

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