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Rick Bartow

Rick Bartow

Fellowship Artist

1946—2016

Fellowship: After The Storm (2001)
Cultural Affiliation: Mad River Wyot

Bartow earned a degree in Secondary Art Education from Western Oregon University in 1969.  He was drafted into the Army and fought in the Vietnam War until 1971.  He was awarded a Bronze Star for his work at a military hospital as a teletype operator and musician.  Bartow’s early graphite drawings were influenced by his recent tour in Vietnam and drug and alcohol abuse.  In addition to his own personal stories, his later sculptural, printed, and painted pieces focused on animals or humans that incorporated elements of one another.  These transformative subjects as well as self-portraits, defined what some would construe to be his archetypal—if not mystical—approach to his art.  In 1997, his twenty-six foot public sculpture The Cedar Mill Pole was displayed in the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden at the White House, and the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian commissioned Bartow to create a large cedar sculpture titled We Were Always Here, which was dedicated on the autumnal equinox in 2012, and situated on the northwest corner of the mall museum.