Truman Lowe

Year inducted: 2007
1944-

Truman Lowe has established himself as a unique innovator in contemporary sculpture, employing Native American materials, themes and traditions, blending ancient forms with contemporary art expression. Born at Winnebago Mission, Black River Falls, WI, Truman was raised in a predominantly Ho Chunk community. His interest in art eventually led him to receive a BS in Art Education from the University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse, and an MFA in sculpture from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1973. A true innovator, Truman continues to be widely exhibited across the United States in galleries and museums that concentrate on both Native American traditions and the most contemporary of contemporary art. He has been a professor of art at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and served as the Curator of Contemporary Art at the National Museum of the American Indian. Citing influences like Brancusi, Henry Moore, Michelangelo, David Smith and Julio Gonzales, he has successfully translated into contemporary forms the traditional materials used by his Native American ancestors. His sculptures capture the essence, beauty and spirit of ancient Native arts and materials shaping them into elegant, sometimes monumental sculptures, blending the record of humankind in new ways. Cornell University art professor, Kay Walkingstick has stated that Truman is “the preeminent native sculptor of his generation”.

Works by Truman Lowe