Meadowlark Gallery: The Artist Biographies

Velino Shije Herrera (1902-1973)
Velino Shije Herrera was born in Zia Pueblo, New Mexico in 1902 and died in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1973. Velino Herrera went to school in Santa Fe and was started in art by Dr. Edgar L. Hewett. He began painting about 1917 and had a successful studio in Santa Fe in 1932. He was a painting instructor at the Albuquerque Indian School in 1936. Herrera was a part of the "San Ildefonso movement" in the Rio Grande area that established the trends in art for the pueblos. His "Buffalo Dancer" is a much copied work. Herrerra's Zia name is Ma Pe Wi, a name that has a double meaning, oriole (red bird) and bad egg. This is the name by which he signed paintings. Accused of betraying his tribe when he was said to have given the sun symbol to the state of New Mexico for use as the official insignia. He ceased painting in 1950 following a disabling auto accident.
View high resolution images of works by Velino Shije Herrera when available.