A chance week-long visit to Taos in 1899 led Oscar Berninghaus to make the isolated New Mexico village his summer home. The 25-year-old St. Louis native was already a skilled illustrator by that time but would enter the St. Louis School of Fine Arts the following year. His formal training was brief, and Berninghaus essentially taught himself how to bring the landscape and people of Taos to canvas. Berninghaus was one of the six founders of the Taos Society of Artists in 1915 and settled there permanently in 1925. By then, he had already achieved national acclaim for his masterful depictions of Southwest Indians within their natural environment. Although less romantic than many of his contemporaries, Berninghaus remained true to a vision of preserving the Indian lifestyle with paint and brush.