Edward Willard Deming1860 - 1942
Painter, sculptor, illustrator
Born: 1860, Ashland, Ohio
Died: 1942, New York City, New York
A multi-faceted artist best known for his depictions of Native Americans and wildlife, Edwin Willard Deming was born in Ashland, Ohio, in 1860. He received his training at the Art Students League and spent a year in Paris where he studied with Boulanger and Lefebvre. Deming had a long-standing relationship with Native Americans. As a child he played with Sac, Fox, and Winnebago Indian children in western Illinois. During Deming’s first trip to the American West in 1887, he visited the Apache and Pueblo Indians in the Southwest, and the Umatillas in Oregon. In 1893, Deming and fellow artist DeCost Smith spent time among the Sioux and Crow Indians to write and illustrate about life among these people for Outing magazine.
On one of his infrequent trips to New York City, Deming married Therese Osterheld, who was also an artist. They raised their six children out West where the Blackfeet Indians adopted the family and gave Deming the name “Eight Bears.” Later, the family moved back to New York City where their home in Greenwich Village was called “The Lodge of the Eight Bears.” Deming collaborated with his wife to write and illustrate a series of children’s books, as well as illustrating a children’s book written by his daughter Alden. He died in New York City in 1942.