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About the Artist

2019's Santa Fe Indian Art Market's featured artist, Tokeya Waci U (Comes Dancing First), is a member of the Oglala Lakota and Haliwa-Saponi Tribes.  He has had the opportunity to travel all over this Indigenous land ever since he was a baby.

He was born in Manhattan, NYC, and then lived in various places throughout his childhood.  But two places that had an impact was his hometown in the Pine Ridge reservation in South Dakota, and also Hollister, NC.  He learned about the cultural aspects in both tribes growing up in these communities and he now introduces them within his art.

He later graduated from Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, KS with a Liberal Arts Degree focusing on fine art.  He also studied Psychology and Theatre art at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO.

He has always been an artist since he was a child.  He would often draw dinosaurs and dragons only to cut them out and use them as his toys.  Throughout high school, he would draw posters and sell them so that he could make his travel money for college.  As he went to college, he learned how to make beadwork, and that's when his skills of Native American artistry grew.  It was only two-and-a-half years ago when he first began his journey as a Ledger Artist, stemming from his experiences within his art therapy sessions.  He had then found his true calling to portray life's experiences, strengthing and empowering all Indigenous people through his art.  As stated in the intro, he was featured as 2019's Santa Fe Indian Art Market's merchandise artist, using his image to sell their t-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, and gift cards.  He has since had the pleasure of having himself and his artworks be featured in museums along the East Coast of the United States and on KQRN Albuquerque news, and the new upcoming TV show: "FBI's Most Wanted" directed by Dick Wolf of Law & Order and SVU.