A Swedish immigrant Bror Julius Nordfeldt became one of the better known of the early 20th-century American modernist artists. He was an etcher and engraver as well as oil painter. He gained early attention for his abstract, non-academic depiction of everyday subject matter such as still lifes, portraits and figures. His treatment of Indians was startling to many as he showed them with stylistic distortion and abstraction, which conveyed an air of mystery that invited viewers to regard them as human beings of psychological depth and not just curiousity-arousing ethnic figures. Returning to Chicago in 1903, Bror Nordfeldt worked as a portrait artist, a set designer for the Little Theatre, and teacher, whose students included Raymond Jonson, modernist painter whom he later joined in New Mexico. From 1917 to 1940, he lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and initially painted sympathetic Indian figures and used Indian motifs as design elements in his canvases. He was one of the founding members of the Indian Artists Fund, an organization dedicated to preserving the heritage of the Pueblo tribes. Encouraged by his artist friend, Russell Cowles, Nordfeldt added landscapes to his subject matter beginning 1929, but destroyed many of these paintings before leaving New Mexico. Bror Julius Nordfeldt lived his last years in Lambertsville, New Jersey, and in 1955, died of a heart attack in Henderson, Texas.