LEROY RAMON ARCHULETA Leroy Ramon Archuleta Main < BACK

Leroy Ramon Archuleta was born and still lives in Tesuque, New Mexico. After completing high school, Archuleta moved to Colorado, where he was a tree cutter for a tree service, then a laborer for Shell Chemical, and finally a worker in a Seven-Up bottling plant. In 1975, he returned to the family home in Tesuque to help his father, master carver Felipe Archuleta. Soon he began making his own carvings. He quickly developed his own recognizable style and gained an enthusiastic following. One difference between the two carvers, is that Leroy uses sandpaper to finish them. Archuleta sculpts animals that he has seen in the woods, as well as animals pictured in books and in the National Geographic Book of Mammals. He captures the character of an animal without romanticizing it; he is known for making his animals (tigers, lions, and even pigs) look extremely fierce by exposing their fangs or teeth.

Archuleta uses a chain saw to rough-shape the cottonwood, and then finishes with hatchets, chisels, and other hand tools. He adds glass eyes, bottlecaps, hemp, wool, leather, or other materials. Where there are cracks in the wood, he fills in with a mixture or glue and sawdust. Sometimes he uses skulls and antlers that he finds (or that come from animals he has hunted) on his carvings.



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