The Chihuahua Art Of George Rodrigue Blue Dog Comes Of Age
The Blue Dog by George Rodrigue is perhaps the most famous Chihuahua art in the world. Rodrigue was born in an area of French Louisiana known as the Acadiana. He was educated at Catholic schools before going to the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. The Chihuaha art “Blue Dog” first made its way into the American conscious in 1984.
The Chihuahua art of the Blue Dog is based on Rodrigue’s childhood pet, Tiffany.
The first Chihuahua art print “Watch Dog” was based on a familiar Cajun folk tale. The Loup-garou is a mythical werewolf that roams around places in Louisiana at night. Rodrigue recalls that he was told as a child to go to bed or else the loup-garou would get him. It is a “boogie man” story that became world art. The “Watch Dog” painting was set in a full moon landscape, which gave the dog the blue tint. Thus the iconic image was born.
The Chihuahua art “Blue Dog” would make its way back into several of Rodrigue’s prints including 1998’s “Hawaiian Blues” and “Sometimes I feel like a dog.
Rodrigue has painted several presidents including Ronald Reagan and George Bush Sr. He painted an Inagural portrait of Bill Clinton and Al Gore in 1997 called “Walking into the 21st Century” that featured the Chihuahua art icon Blue Dog.
Most recently, Rodrigue has been commissioned to paint Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and his wife Supiriya.
The Chihuahua art of George Rodrigue has spawned other political terms. For instance “Blue Dogs” are conservative Democrats, mostly from the Southern states where Rodrigue grew up.
After the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, Rodrigue stayed up all night to paint “God Bless America.” In this case, the familiar blue dog was white with red eyes and placed against the American flag. The normal “Blue Dog” features a blue dog with yellow eyes in a variety of settings. The painting raised half a million dollars for the Red Cross in the weeks after the attack.
He has also been involved in the relief effort after Hurricane Katrina destroyed his home city of New Orleans. The sale of specified Blue Dog prints raised $2.5 million for relief efforts.
The Blue Dog never shifts his expression. Rodrigue has never painted him with a smile. He is never complacent and never asleep. It is as if he is still looking for the answers in a complicated world. He reminds us of the things we cannot know but still search out.
Rodrigue is now a multi-millionaire because of the popular Blue Dog series. The original portraits often sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Limited series lithographs can command 5 figures. And, more ordinary folks can get the pictures in table books and calendars.
The 65 year old artist has also become the artist laureate of the state of Louisiana.
Rodrigue has encountered much success in his life as an artist, much of it due to the portrait of the Blue dog, true Chihuahua art.