Brycelea started life by the Lukachukai Mountains on the Dinee
near Cove, Arizona. He had a traditional upbringing, and won his first
award for his art when he was in second grade. It was not until high
though, that art became a part of his life again, when he struggled
an oil painting class. Despite the frustration he experienced with that
particular medium of art, his classmates admired his pencil, and pen
ink drawings, and used them in their high school yearbook. Clifford
going to trade school after he graduated, until a school counselor
that he would be unlikely to make it in a four year college. He proved
her wrong by graduating in 1975 with a Bachelor of Arts degree from
Lewis College in Durango, Colorado.
not focus on
Native American themes in his art until after college. His initial
exposure came shortly after graduation when Jackson Clark Sr. (founder
of what is today Toh-Atin Gallery in Durango) added Cliffords paintings
to the stores inventory. Mr. Clark encouraged Clifford to enter his art
in competitive shows. It wasnt long before Cliffords works started
awards once again.
Louis LAmour purchased one of Cliffords paintings. At the time of that
initial purchase LAmour was in Durango conducting research for his book
"Haunted Mesa". LAmour was so impressed with Cliffords work that he
it on the cover of "Haunted Mesa", and used Cliffords art later to
several short stories. The two men became close friends, and in 1981
hosted at his Beverly Hills home, a private showing of Cliffords art.
LAmour passed away in 1988, his wife continues to be a collector of
uncluttered, remote scenery and lone tepees or hogans. He strives to
his landscapes restful to look at, and hopes that they evoke a sense of
peacefulness. The scale of his painted landscapes is usually small.
initially started making his landscapes in miniature when he was on the
road traveling between shows. He found that the reduced size allowed
to complete them more easily when his time was limited, and when being
on the road provided distractions.
paints, but achieves power and subtlety with his talent in watercolor
acrylics. Unlike his watercolor paintings, his acrylic paintings often
depict kachinas and mystical figures and bolder, darker settings.
diversity has won him numerous awards including four Gold medals from
American Indian and Cowboy Artist group, and in 1987 the "Indian Artist
of the Year" award form the Indian Arts and Crafts Association (LACA).
His art has graced the cover of Southwest Art magazine, and he has
the cover art for books by several authors in addition to LAmour. He
illustrated the childrens book "Moon and Otter and Frog," an
his children are sure to admire and enjoy. He was also featured in the
recent Discovery Channel documentary about Canyon De Chelley, titled
Brycelca enjoys a varied and successful career, sharing his creativity
and vision with all.