Canku Ota - A Newsletter Celebrating Native America
March 11, 2000 - Issue 05

Joe Geshick
Information provided by Joe Geshick

Feeding of the Spirit

Born on June 21, 1943 near Faribault, Minnesota, Joe began painting at age 19. In the late 70s, he studied at the Art Students League in New York. While attending school, he worked at the Museum of the American Indian, where he made pen and ink drawings of the museum artifacts. After completing his studies in New York, Joe moved to the Lac La Croix reserve in Ontario, Canada, where he taught art in an elementary school. From Canada, Joe moved to Reno, Nevada, where he taught art and eventually established his own art studio.

During his stay at Lac La Croix, Joe learned the history of his clan, discovered his Ojibway name, Mishakeebaneesh, and was introduced to traditional ceremonies. In 1977, for the first time, Joe participated in the annual Sundance Ceremony at Greengrass, South Dakota. Through five years of sundancing, Joes spiritual development became firmly rooted in the traditional ceremonies, bringing a new understanding into his life.

The deepening influence of this involvement in traditional ceremonies also brought about a change in his work as an artist. Shifting away from his prior concentration on landscapes, still lifes, portraits, and seascapes, Joe began experimenting with the palette knife to paint traditional images drawn from his experiences with the ceremonies, using the six sacred colors--red, yellow, black, white, green and blue. Out of respect to the sacred nature of ceremonial objects such as pipes and medicine bundles, Joe chooses not to use such images in his work.

Today, Joes work is sold throughout the United States and Canada. He also does work on commission.

For further information contact: Joe Geshick, 500 N. Robert Street, Studio #738, St. Paul, MN, 55101; or phone (651) 291-2479 or e-mail Joe at

Joe Geshick - Sundance Traditional Fine Arts

The Circle of Life

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