Narciso Abeyta

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Narciso Abeyta
Born Ha So Deh
Died June 22, 1998
Nationality Navajo, American
Known for Painting, silversmithing

Narciso Platero Abeyta or Ha So Deh (1918–1998) was a Navajo painter and silversmith.

Early life and education[edit]

Abeyta was born in 1918. He is named after his father, Narciso. His mother was Pablita.[1] He started drawing when he was eleven.[2] He attended the Santa Fe Indian School, starting in 1939. Dorothy Dunn was his teacher. Abeyta was a Golden Gloves boxer. He served in World War II (US Army[3]) as a code talker.[4] After he returned from service, he was unable to work for ten years due to his experiences at war.[5] Eventually, he attended the University of New Mexico. He trained under Raymond Jonson.[2]

Mid-life and career[edit]

Abeyta was primarily a painter. His paintings document Navajo life, and use brush stroke techniques that are reminiscent of Navajo rugs.[2] He had two known commissions for work as a muralist; a 1934 mural for a social science classroom in Santa Fe, New Mexico and in 1939 for Maisel's Indian Trading Post in Albuquerque, New Mexico.[6]

Abeyta married Sylvia Ann a Quaker woman. She was a non-Native American ceramics artist.[5] They had seven children, including artists Tony Abeyta and Pablita Abeyta. The family lived in Gallup, New Mexico.[7]

Later life and legacy[edit]

He died in 1998 from a cerebral hemorrhage.[8] His work is held in the collections of the National Gallery of Art, National Museum of the American Indian, and the Museum of New Mexico.[8]

Major exhibitions[edit]


  1. ^ "Narciso Abeyta". Artist. AskArt. Retrieved 23 April 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c "Narciso Platero Abeyta (1918-1998) Ha So De - Fiercely Ascending". Adobe Gallery. Retrieved 7 December 2013. 
  3. ^ Plateau Sciences of Gallup, NM, Code Talker's Meal, wore US Army uniform
  4. ^ Dyer, Linda. "20th-Century Narciso Abeyta (Ha So De) Painting". Roadshow Archive. WGBH Boston. Retrieved 7 December 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Joëlle Rostkowski (2012). Conversations with Remarkable Native Americans. SUNY Press. p. 57. ISBN 978-1-4384-4176-4. 
  6. ^ Lester, Patrick D., The Biographical Directory of Native American Painters, SIR Publications, Tulsa, Oklahoma, 9780806199369, page 2, First edition, 1995
  7. ^ June, Ana. "Tony Abeyta". Local Flavor. Retrieved 7 December 2013. 
  8. ^ a b "Narciso Platero Abeyta, painter of Navajo themes". Bangor Daily News. 26 June 1998. Retrieved 7 December 2013. 
  9. ^ Abeyta, Narciso; Tony Abeyta (1994). Translating Navajo worlds: the art of Narciso (Ha-So-De) and Tony Abeyta, January 22-May 4, 1994. Santa fe: Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian.