Pablita Velarde (1918-2007) Biography

View available works by Pablita Velarde (1918-2007)


Pablita was known as "Tse Tsan" or Golden Dawn. She was the daughter of Marianita Chavarria and Herman Velarde of Santa Clara. She was also the mother of Helen Hardin. She attended the Santa Fe Indian School in 1936, and became a teacher, lecturer, author, illustrator and painter.  Pablita completed a four-month tour with the famous naturalist painter, Earnest Thompson Seton.  She benefited greatly by the exposure to a wide variety of audiences that purchased her paintings. She returned to New Mexico and established her first studio at the Pueblo and began her painting career.

In1956, Pablita began her unique earth painting made from ground up colored rocks, then mixed with glue and applied to masonite. Pablita drew heavily from her pueblo past. She believed there was great beauty and dignity to draw upon the past. (Snodgrass 1968)

Pablita was one of the most recognized artists of the American Southwest. She wrote and illustrated many books and her artworks are in museums throughout the world. She received numerous awards from all over the world including the French Government ‘ Palmes d'Academiques' in 1954.



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