Bert Seabourn knew he wanted to be an artist when he was in the first grade. In the eighth grade, he sold his first cartoon to King Features Syndicate. In High school, Bert would hop a freight train or hitchhike from Purcell to Oklahoma City to visit the Oklahoma Museum of Art. Bert joined the Navy during the Korean War. Although he lacked art training, the Navy put Bert to work as an illustratar.
Bert began to explore his Indian heritage & incorporate it in his art. Bert is best known for combining images of birds & animals with the face of an old wise medicine man, the keeper of the culture for all Indian tribes. Bert says he tries to show feelings & compassion through his paintings for a way of life which once was, but will never be again.
Bert studied art at Oklahoma City University, the University of Oklahoma & with the Famous Artists correspondence Art school. He has worked as a journalist, publicity & advertising director, commercial artist, draftsman, free-lance artist & sculptor. In 1978, Bert became a full-time painter. Bert works in oil, acrylic, watercolor, pen & ink, & prints. He currently resides in Oklahoma City, OK.
Bert has exhibited extensively & won numerous awards at the All-American Indian Days (Sheridan, WY), the Trail of Tears Art Show at the Cherokee National Museum (Tahlequah, OK), the Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonials (Gallup, NM), the Competitive Shows & Masters Shows at the Five Civilized Tribes Museum (Muskogee, OK), the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair & Market (Phoenix, AZ), the All-Oklahoma Indian Artists Invitational at the Oklahoma Art Center (Oklahoma City, OK), the Oklahoma Art Guild Annual (Oklahoma City, OK), the Annual Indian Art Exhibition at the Philbrook Museum of Art (Tulsa, OK), the Red Cloud Indian Art Show (Pine Ridge, SD), the Red Earth Festival (Oklahoma City, OK), the Southwestern Association on Indian Affairs, Inc. at Indian Market (Santa Fe, NM) & the Festival of the Arts (Oklahoma City, OK). Bert has also exhibited at the Hastings College Arts Center (Hastings, NE), the Kimball Art Center (Park City, UT), the Heard Museum (Phoenix, AZ), the Indian Arts & Crafts Association (Albuquerque, NM), the Owensboro Museum of Fine Arts (Owensboro, KY), the Anniston Museum of Natural History (Anniston, AL), the Denver Museum of Natural History (Denver, CO), the Native American Center for the Living Arts (Niagara Falls, NY), the Oklahoma Museum of Art (Oklahoma City, OK), the Oklahoma State Capitol (Oklahoma City, OK), the Peabody Museum at Harvard University (Cambridge, MA), the Scottsdale National Indian Art Exhibition (Scottsdale, AZ), the Southern Plains Indian Museum & Craft Center (Anadarko, OK), the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian (Santa Fe, NM) & the Smithsonian Institution (Washington, D.C.).
Bert participated in the pintura Amerindia Contemporanea E.U.A. tour of Chile, Bolivia, Peru, Colombia & Ecuador, sponsored by the United States Dept. of State & the International Communications Agency (Washington, D.C.). In 1975, Bert participated in the overseas Export Fair in Berlin, Germany. In 1976, Bert was designated a Master Artist by the Five Civilized Tribes Museum (Muskogee, OK). In 1982, Bert was awarded the sixth Annual Oklahoma Governor's Art Award. In 1990, Bert was designated a "Living Legend" by Ralph Oliver. In 1992, Bert participated in the Franco-American Institute Exhibit in Rennes, France.
Numerous private & public art collections feature artwork by Bert Seabourn, including both the Bureau of Indian Affairs & the Indian Arts & Crafts Board of the United States Dept. of the Interior (Washington, D.C.), the Five Civilized Tribes Museum (Muskogee, OK), the Heritage Center Inc. Collection (Pine Ridge, SD), the Red Earth Indian Center (Oklahoma City, OK), the Heard Museum (Phoenix, AZ), the Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonials (Gallup, NM), the Oklahoma State Art tollection (Oklahoma City, OK),. The Pacific Northwest Indian Center at Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA), the Lianhe Bao Limited (Singapore), the National Palace Museum (Taipei, Taiwan) & the Vatican Museum of Modern Religious Art (Vatican City, Italy).