Marcia Rafelman Fine Arts

Edward Sheriff Curtis

(American, 1868–1952)

portrait of a woman (from album of west coast canadian indians) by edward sheriff curtis

Edward Sheriff Curtis

Portrait of a Woman (from album of West Coast Canadian Indians), 1914

Price on Request



Born in rural Wisconsin
Built first camera and became an avid, self-taught photographer
Moved to Seattle area, subsistence farmer
Bought half interest in a photography studio
Began winning national and international awards for his photographs of Native Americans and was deeply influenced by the Pictorialist movement
Was official photographer for the Harriman Alaska Expedition
Began his life’s work photographing Native Americans, in earnest
President Theodore Roosevelt became a great champion of Curtis and his work
Armed with a letter of support from Roosevelt, secured initial backing from J.P. Morgan
Curtis and Morgan agree that Curtis will create and publish “the finest set of books ever made in America
1907 - 1930
Curtis constantly struggles to raise funds to keep the project going, losing his money, his health, and his family before the completion. He exhibits his work and lectures widely. His Picture Musicale sells out Carnegie Hall. His prints are broadly collected and his sets of rare books sell for the equivalent of a 9,000 sq. ft. mansion. He completes the project in 1930 and is immediately hospitalized for two years


Edward S. Curtis From the Sparks Collection, - Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Colorado Springs, CO
Mingled Visions: Selections from Edward S. Curtis's The North American Indian - Wichita Art Museum WAM, Wichita, KS
Edward S. Curtis: The North American Indian - Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, TX
Edward Curtis: Photogravures from 'The North American Indian' - Picker Art Gallery at Colgate University, Hamilton, NY
Impressões Visuais - CAM - Casa Andrade Muricy, Curitiba