Meet local artist Tony Weldon whose art represent truth, instead of Hollywood sensationalized fiction. Tony was born in Monroe, Georgia and raised in Stone Mountain. His grandparents were very influential, and encouraging in his artistic endeavors. They grew up in the 1920’s and 30’s and it was difficult as Native Americans but told him to never be ashamed of his cultural heritage. The Native American People are just like everyone else, with lives and histories all their own, and they are not a theme park attraction.
in 1994 one of Tony’s fine art pieces was accepted into the permanent exhibition in the as yet to be built Native American Museum, which is part of the Smithsonian! He also has a piece in the Southwest Indian Artists Museum in Atlanta, Georgia and the in Booth Western Museum in Cartersville, Georgia. Tony is also affiliated with the Red Cloud gallery in St. Petersburg and participated in the Native American art and wildlife exhibition in Georgia and Florida. Tony has 2 upcoming commissions for the Cody Museum in Wyoming and the Palm Springs Art Museum.
Tony’s Grandfather worked as a house painter and faux muralist and taught him how to mix paints and create colors. Tony did art throughout school and finally went to Reinhardt University in northern Georgia for 2 years. Then attended Ringling in Sarasota for 3 years earning his B.F.A. and became the first person in his family to graduate from college.
Tony worked in commercial arts for 30 years and dabbled in fine art on the side moving to Tampa while working in the graphics for Home Depot; and then in 2009 started teaching at the International School of Art and Design teaching illustration, graphic design, and color theory. Tony also travels to pow-wows all over the country at different times and places with tribes from all over in attendance. These events include dancing, history lessons, and horse riding demonstrations of skill, language and traditions are kept alive here as well as art sales.
Tony works in Pencil and graphite drawings, scratchboard, and oil but has recently started to dabble in acrylic. His art is realistic and historical he has a library of references on different tribes, what they wore how they lived, dwellings, tools, symbolism and religious practices in the pursuit of accuracy. Tony would also like to start sculpting in bronze, wood, and stone. He hopes to continue teaching as he enjoys the sharing and guidance of the work and just keep on keeping on.
Check out Tony’s art here.