Home » Artists & Authors » Marty Two Bulls Jr.

Marty Two Bulls Jr.

Tribal Affiliation: Oglala Lakota

Born: 1984

Known for: Artist, musician, and educator.

“"Mitákuye Oyasin" is a Lakota phrase that loosely translates to "we are all related". It is a philosophy that is directly tied to Lakota culture and religion. We say this phrase in our ceremonies and it is meant to remind us that we are related and interconnected to everyone; even to the plants and animals. Mitákuye Oyasin is a phrase that is meant in my culture to reinforce empathy and humility. I believe that using our language in conversation to encourage empathy and humility is a powerful statement.” — Marty Two Bulls Jr.

Marty Two Bulls Jr. is an artist and educator based in Rapid City, South Dakota. Two Bulls is an enrolled member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and was raised in the High Plains of South Dakota.

He comes from a family of diverse artists. His father, Marty Two Bulls Sr., is an accomplished artist and was his first art instructor. He grew up in his father’s studio, where he learned the fundamentals of sculpture, illustration, graphic design, and, most importantly, how to make a living as a creative person. Two Bulls eventually went on to study printmaking and ceramics at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, where he earned a bachelor’s in fine arts in 2011. After graduation, he spent several years in Santa Fe developing his art practice and working in contemporary art galleries, where he worked with a plethora of contemporary artists from around the world.

In 2017, he was offered a full-time faculty position with Oglala Lakota College (OLC) to teach art. He jumped at the opportunity to return to his homeland and work with his tribal community. Since returning home, Two Bulls has created a graphic arts program at OLC and continues to work as a positive force for the arts in his communities both near and far.  Two Bulls has exhibited his artwork in galleries and museums both nationally and internationally with works in several museum permanent collections.