It was art that kept Rick Bartow alive, when he lost his father in his early years - the link to his Indian roots. Later, as a young adult, he was sent to Vietnam, and his traumatic war memories affected him for years driving him into alcoholism. His dreadful-beautiful “Black Inkies” date back to this period – drawings painted with black chalk the creation of which was a sort of self-therapy. This was followed by an enterprising period supposed to have been initiated by the lucky time with his first wife and his recollection to his Indian roots, at the same time. This was the period his best-known works, the so-called “Transformative Painting” were created – dense illustrations in which figures of men and animals are melting with each other; works that mostly came to life without having been planned.