"Prairie Christmas"
by Franz Brown / John P Falstaff

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Acrylic 24x18

I was asked once to do a prairie Santa. I wanted to do one related to gift giving and generosity is highly esteemed among the Native American prairie cultures. I worked with a craftsman who occasionally had quillwork and beaded buckskin dolls and I chose this doll that has porcupine quillwork in the four traditional Lakota colors: red, white, black and yellow standing for the four directions: north, south, west and east. I found it interesting that red and white, the two polar directions were also the Santa suit primary colors and the other colors in black (the belt) and gold (the buttons and buckle) were included. In the background is a star from a star quilt pattern, a traditional gift of the Lakota women. Santa also wears a quillwork strip with a white buffalo, sacred to Lakota culture. The beaded beard is my own favorite decoration for the Christmas season.

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Copyright, Franz Brown