Joe Herrera, also known as See Ru, or Blue Bird, was the son of famed Cochiti artist Tonita Pena. He studied under Dorothy Dunn at the Studio of Indian Arts in the 1930s and initially adhered to the exacting style of the traditional Indian artist. He later broke new ground by incorporating European motifs into his traditional paintings.
Joe Herrera’s works are included in several important institutional collections, such as the Philbrook Museum in Tulsa Oklahoma, the Denver Art Museum, and the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. In 1954, he was awarded the Les Palmes d’Academiques from the French government.
The artist’s inspiration for this piece came from the excavations at Pottery Mound, the sacred Pueblo traditions associated with macaws, and a feeling for the color and form relations that give this composition its modern design.
Anasazi Parrots is the only limited edition of Joe Herrera’s work. It was completed in 1993.