Barefoot Artist of the Florida Seminoles
By: Carol Mahler
Meet the outsider who gave color and shape to sacred Seminole legends, life, and history
“This book captures the magic of Florida through the eyes and paint brush of a true Florida artist.”–Theodore Morris, artist and author of Florida’s Lost Tribes
“The memories and reflections Mahler captures reveal important insights into the traditions of the Seminoles of the past.”–Michole Eldred, curator of collections, Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum
“Guy LaBree is a self-made Florida artist. His love and enthusiasm for Florida, the Seminole Indians who have been his friends since youth, and wildlife have enabled him to create masterpieces. We are the beneficiaries of his works.”–Patsy West, author of The Enduring Seminoles: From Alligator Wrestling to Casino Gaming
Guy LaBree’s connection to the Seminole Tribe of Florida began when he was an elementary school student in the 1940s living near the Dania (now Hollywood) reservation in Florida. However, it wasn’t until the 1970s that his relationship with the tribe grew into a remarkable creative partnership.
LaBree was encouraged by Seminoles who were former classmates and friends to produce paintings depicting important teachings about Seminole culture, customs, history, and legend as a way of passing on traditional knowledge to younger generations. To do this, he was given unprecedented access to privileged information never before shared with outsiders. As a sign of his success, two of his images now hang in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian.
This book features forty-two stunning selections from this self-taught artist’s output of more than 1,000 paintings. It also tells, for the first time, the intriguing story behind the white man who became A Bosh Che−Will A Tee Chee: “The Barefoot Artist of the Seminoles.”