July 27, 1904
|Died||June 27, 1951|
Phillips County, Montana, U.S.
|Education||University of Oklahoma|
Haskell Indian Nations University
William Standing, also known as Fire Bear (July 27, 1904 – June 27, 1951) was an American painter and illustrator. He was Assiniboine, and his work depicted the lives of Native Americans in the Northwestern United States.
Standing was born on July 27, 1904 on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation near Oswego, Montana. He was Assiniboine; his great-grandfather, Wi-jún-jon, was the chief of the Assiniboine tribe. His Assiniboine name, Fire Bear, was the same as his grandfather's.
Standing was educated on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation until he went to a boarding school run by Presbyterian missionaries in Wolf Point, Montana. He attended the University of Oklahoma thanks to Oscar Jacobson, and he graduated from Haskell Indian Nations University in 1924.
Standing began his career as an interior designer in Kansas. He moved back to Montana to become a painter, and he used pens, inks and oil to create his artwork. His paintings and postcard illustrations depicted the American West, especially the lives of Native Americans in the Northwestern United States.
Standing did many portraits of his grandfather and his great-grandfather. He also did a portrait of Charles Curtis, the 31st Vice President of the United States. He illustrated the book Land of Naboka in 1942.
His artwork was exhibited at the Arts Club of Washington as well as in Paris, France. According to his obituary in the Great Falls Tribune, he became "one of Montana's best known contemporary artists."
Personal life, death and legacy
Standing died in a car accident near Zortman in Phillips County on June 27, 1951, and his body was taken to Malta. He was 46. Some of his work is in the permanent collections of the Hockaday Museum of Art in Kalispell and the University of Montana's Montana Museum of Art & Culture in Missoula.
- "Standing, William (1904-1951)". Montana Historical Society Museum Collections Online. Retrieved December 15, 2018.
- "William Standing, Artist, Killed In Auto Accident". The Independent-Record. Helena, Montana. June 28, 1951. p. 2. Retrieved December 13, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- "State Historical Society Has 21 Oil Paintings on Loan for Centennial Year". The Independent-Record. Helena, Montana. December 8, 1963. p. 6. Retrieved December 15, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Title: William Standing (1904-1951): versatile Assiniboin artist". Human Relations Area Files. Yale University. Retrieved December 13, 2018.
- Gillette, F. B. (June 28, 1931). "Indian Has Reputation as Painter. Artist Comes From Long Line of Tribal Leaders; Works Win Acclaim". Great Falls Tribune. p. 13. Retrieved December 15, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- "William Standing (1904 - 1951)". Hockaday Museum of Art. Retrieved December 15, 2018.
- "Indian Artist Killed...". Great Falls Tribune. Great Falls, Montana. June 28, 1951. p. 1. Retrieved December 13, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Indian Artist Dies In Auto Crash". The Salt Lake Tribune. June 29, 1951. p. 29. Retrieved December 13, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Indian's Works Being Featured. Butte Art Center Announces Exhibit by William Standing". The Montana Standard. Butte, Montana. August 21, 1938. p. 8. Retrieved December 15, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- McFarlane, Jane (August 26, 2001). "William Standing exhibit. Standing tall. Museum resurrects works and memories of straight-shooting Assiniboine artist". Great Falls Tribune. p. 47. Retrieved December 15, 2018 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Permanent Collection". Montana Museum of Art & Culture. University of Montana. Retrieved December 15, 2018.