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"I wonder if the Moon rides a horse..."

While doing research on Native American folklore, I came upon the anecdote quoted below right. I immediately had a mental image- I could just see the moon riding a horse! So of course I had to paint it...This painting is acrylic on cotton gauze with a painted frame of pine: 22 x 28 inches.

A Storyteller's Art Gallery: Back to the main Gallery entrance.
A Wiser Lion Now: sculpture
Elder Brother and the Spider People: painting
The Dawn Women: painting
I Stand for my Horse : painting
"Mommy, does the Sun come up riding a horse?": painting
Grandfather Toad: sculpture
The Wonderful Watermelon Horse: sculpture

When horses were introduced into the Americas, indigenous peoples immediately took them to heart- including them not only in their lives but also in their mythologies. Horses were associated with all the natural elements, and the heavenly bodies. The Navajo and Apache were among those who felt that the sun and moon rode about the sky on horses. The sun, the moon, and the horse all exhibit rapid, changing motion, so this was a natural association. One Navajo informant told anthropologist Willard W. Hill; "The Moon is a funny thing. It is always changing it's size and moving around. I wonder if it rides a horse." I thought when I read this that even 'tho times change, and everybody may no longer be steeped in the old mythology, that people might still ponder this question. And that's what I've shown in this painting: a couple out enjoying the evening air, wondering about the moon.

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