Andersen Kee grew up in Cottonwood, 25 miles west of Chinle. "Sometimes it shows up on the map, and sometimes it doesn't," he says. This is a place on the planet best described by Willa Cather, who wrote, "Elsewhere the sky is the roof of the world, but here the earth was the floor of the sky."
Taking a cue from his parents' creativity and handiwork, Andersen would go out to a nearby cliff and break off a flat section of rock on which he would scratch images with a nail or sharp piece of glass. In the way he could rub the images off the surface and paint something else, the sandstone slabs were like a chalkboard.
He didn't speak English until he was in the fifth grade, nor did he grow up having much of a feeling for Navajo history. Eventually his interest in history began to manifest itself in drawings and paintings, which led to a lifelong devotion to Native American subject matter.
Encouraged by a high school art teacher, he applied and was accepted into the prestigious Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. For the past 24 years, he has been "making art" in New Mexico.
In addition to his visual art accomplishments, Andersen Kee also has many performing arts credits - Dog Soldiers, The Little Big Horn, and Into The West are just a few of his recent movies.