During his brief career, this Caddo and Kiowa painter, poet and musician blazed a new path for American Indian art and captured the energy and conflict of the 1960s and 1970s. His influence on Indigenous art is finally gaining recognition in an illuminating travelling exhibit now showing at the Museum in New York from April 6 through Sept. 16, 2019.
The REDress Project of Métis artist Jaime Black speaks for the hundreds, possibly thousands, of Indigenous women and girls who have been murdered or disappeared during the past four decades. The red dresses fluttering at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere are an eerie reminder of a prevalent violence.
In 1619, as peace with the Powhatan Indians was breaking down, the settlement of Jamestown received its first captives from Africa, convened a representative assembly and awaited the arrival of the first large-scale importation of potential wives from England. The Commonwealth is marking the subsequent four centuries of “American Evolution,” with a memorial being built to commemorate influential women of the day – including the Pamunkey chief Cockacoeske – and an Indigenous film festival.
The Indian tribes of Massachusetts and Connecticut went all in to support the American Revolution, losing men in engagements from the Boston Massacre to the Battle of Bunker Hill and beyond. Yet some are still fighting for federal recognition and reservation rights.
When Porfirio Gutierrez returned to his home village near Oaxaca, he found his family and other local Zapotec weavers struggling to maintain their traditional techniques and still address the demands from external markets. Using the financial experience he gained from two decades in the United States, he is helping them adapt and preserve the old ways.
A lead from the other side of the world is helping to fill in gaps of knowledge about our collections. One of the dealers who helped George Gustav Heye assemble his massive ethnological holdings in the early 1900s was the British collector William Ockleford Oldman. Following Oldman’s trail, NMAI’s Collection Documentations Manager Maria Galban located a treasure trove of his business records and invaluable provenance information in the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington.
Cloud Madonna is T.C. Cannon’s Native take on the Madonna of Christianity’s Virgin Mary. This Madonna wears a vibrant blue mantle, and instead of holding a baby Jesus, she walks with her life sustaining melon, a gift of the gods in the sunburnt desert. The water jar atop Cloud Madonna’s head serves as a halo, extending to the heavens. A major exhibit of T.C. Cannon’s work comes to the Museum in New York from April 6 to Sept. 16, 2019.