Born 1954, Wichita, Kansas, USA
BFA, 1976, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas, USA
MFA, 1979, Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Edgar Heap of Birds is an enrolled member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes. His artworks include multi-disciplinary forms of public art messages, large-scale drawings, Neuf Series acrylic paintings, prints, works in glass and monumental porcelain enamel on steel outdoor sculpture. In June 2005, Heap of Birds completed the fifty-foot signature, outdoor sculpture titled Wheel, a circular porcelain enamel on steel work was commissioned by The Denver Art Museum and is inspired by the traditional Medicine Wheel of the Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming.
Heap of Birds has taught as Visiting Professor at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, Rhode Island and Michaelis School of Art, University of Cape Town, South Africa. At the University of Oklahoma since 1988, Professor Heap of Birds teaches in Native American Studies. His seminars explore issues of the contemporary artist on local, national and international level.
The artist has exhibited widely and has received numerous grants and awards, including The National Endowment for the Arts, Rockefeller Foundation, Lila Wallace Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trust and the Andy Warhol Foundation. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts Degree from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, Boston, Massachusetts in 2008. Heap of Birds’ artwork was chosen by the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian as their entry for the United States Pavilion at the 52nd Venice Biennale. He represented the Smithsonian with a major collateral public art project and blown glass works in Venice, June 2007 titled: “Most Serene Republics.