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Public perception of Native American art and culture has often been derived from misunderstandings and misinterpretations, and from images promulgated by popular culture. Typically, Native Americans are grouped as a whole and their art and culture considered part of the past rather than widely present. Shapeshifting challenges these assumptions by focusing on the objects as art rather than cultural or anthropological artifacts and on the multivalent creativity of Native American artists. The approach highlights the inventive contemporaneity that existed in all periods and continues today. More than 75 works in a wide range of media and scale are organized into four thematic groups: changing-expanding the imagination; knowing-expressing worldview; locating-exploring identity and place; and voicing-engaging the individual. The result is a paradigm shift in understanding Native American art.
Praise for the companion title "Encyclopedia of Native Tribes of
North America" by Michael Johnson:
"Arts and Crafts of the Native American Tribes" is an authoritative illustrated reference that has been carefully created to be a companion to "Encyclopedia of Native Tribes of North America," not a competitive title. It examines in detail how Native American culture evolved and considers the regional similarities and differences of the arts and crafts created by tribes across the continent. Contemporary and modern photographs, fine line illustrations and step-by-step reconstructions (including a Plains Indian warrior dress with headdress, war bonnet, shirt and leggings) show the techniques of manufacture and display the skill and artistry of the crafters.
The book opens with concise coverage of the main cultural areas of North America and a survey of styles by region and over time. A major section on the living structures -- huts, tipis, igloos, etc. -- is followed by an analysis of individual crafts. These include: Baskets -- plaiting, twining, coiling Bone, antler and horn -- implements, tools, pins, fishhooks Decorative arts -- beadwork, porcupine quillwork Featherwork -- bonnets and headdresses Metalwork -- copper, silver, iron, gold Pottery Shellwork Skinwork -- rawhide, leather, furs Stonework -- arrowheads, pipes, art Textiles -- spinning, weaving Woodwork -- totems, figures, masks, utensils, working with bark.
"Arts and Crafts of the Native American Tribes" is destined to be a primary reference used by ethnographers, historians and collectors for years to come. It is essential for any library serving academic patrons.
Mythologizing Norval Morrisseau examines the complex identities assigned to Anishinaabe artist Norval Morrisseau. Was he an uneducated artist plagued by alcoholism and homelessness? Was Morrisseau a shaman artist who tapped a deep spiritual force? Or was he simply one of Canada's most significant artists? Carmen L. Robertson charts both the colonial attitudes and the stereotypes directed at Morrisseau and otherIndigenous artists in Canada's national press. Robertson also examines Morrisseau's own shaping of his image. An internationally known and award-winning artist from a remote area of northwestern Ontario, Morrisseau founded an art movement known as Woodland Art developed largely from Indigenous and personal creative elements. Still, until his retrospective exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada in 2006, many Canadians knew almost nothing aboutMorrisseau's work.Using discourse analysis methods, Robertson looks at news stories, magazine articles, and film footage, ranging from Morrisseau's first solo exhibition at Toronto's Pollock Gallery in 1962 until his death in 2007 to examine the cultural assumptions that have framed Morrisseau.
Although some aspects of pre-Roman and pre-Christian beliefs remain shrouded in mystery, the author of this comprehensive, profusely illustrated volume contends that neither the Roman invasion of Britain nor the coming of Christianity eliminated pagan religious practice. Dr Anne Ross, who speaks Gaelic and Welsh, writes from wide experience of living in Celtic speaking communities where she has traced vernacular tradition. She employs archaeological and anthropological evidence, as well as folklore, to provide broad insight into the early Celtic world. She begins by examining Celtic places of worship, the shrines and sanctuaries in which sacred objects were housed and from where they could be ritually displayed with various rites and sacrifices were conducted before the people. Dr Anne Ross describes the divine warriors with their aquatic, therapeutic and fertility connection. Dr Anne Ross is truly gripping as she leads the reader through her evidence from ritual pits and cult sites, votive wells, sacred precincts and monuments. This is a brilliant piece of historical and archaeological reconstruction.
This lively introductory survey of indigenous North American arts from ancient times to the present explores both the shared themes and imagery found across the continent and the distinctive traditions of each region. Focusing on the richness of artwork created in the US and Canada, NativeNorth American Art, Second Edition, discusses 3,000 years of architecture, wood and rock carvings, basketry, dance masks, clothing and more. The expanded text discusses twentieth- and twenty-first-century arts in all media including works by James Luna, Kent Monkman, Nadia Myre, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Will Wilson, and many more. Authors Berlo and Phillips incorporate new research and scholarship, examining such issues as art and ethics, gender, representation, and the colonial encounter. By bringing into one conversation the seemingly separate realms of the sacred and the secular, the political and the domestic, and the ceremonial and the commercial, Native North American Art shows how visual arts not only maintain the integrity of spiritual and social systems within Native North American societies, but have long been part of a cross-cultural experience as well.
This volume of photographs and commentary brings together artworks from one of the most outstanding African-owned private collections of African art, the Femi Akinsanya African Art Collection. The collection includes a large number of canonical artworks of Yoruba, Igbo, Urhobo, Cross River, Benin and Benue River Valley origins. Its core artworks consist of sculptures from all major regions of Nigeria, and interesting examples of Edo/Benin bronze and brass sculptures from the late dynastic and twentieth century interregnum periods of Benin art. The book uses the diversity, styles and originality of these artworks to evaluate the material process of formalising and interpreting an African-owned collection of African art. Publications focusing on African collectors of African art are very rare and this limits our understanding of how Africans engage with indigenous art and cultural production, or questions about cultural patrimony, in their own contexts. The analysis of this unique collection provides a significant insight into an unexplored aspect of African art collections and the role and relevance of African collectors in shaping the discourse on this art.
Cemeteries are the repositories of history and personal narrative, places of comfort and beauty. Beginning in 1994, photographer and installation artist Kathy T. Hettinga began a fourteen-year project to document an unknown body of funerary folk art displayed in the cemeteries of the San Luis Valley in southern Colorado. The book begins with the author's story of death and loss as a young widow living in the San Luis Valley. Years later, the beauty of the valley was relentless in calling her back to document the places and the ways people honor those that have died. Grave Images recounts Hettinga's spiritual and artistic journey to find meaning in the cemeteries of rural and largely Hispanic communities of the San Luis Valley. Her photographs of unique grave markers made of wood, concrete, metal, sandstone, glass and other materials by individuals or families to commemorate the passing of loved ones capture the ethereal beauty of the cemeteries and serve as a touchstone for our common understanding of loss, grief, and the need to memorialize and pay tribute. Hettinga's illuminating narrative articulates the meaning of this visual record from the perspective of an artist and provides religious and historical perspectives on the San Luis Valley as final resting place. This book will appeal to artists, art historians, ethnographers, historians, scholars of religion and general audiences interested in photography, folk art, and the history of the San Luis Valley.
This book explores the roles of contemporary urban shrines and their visual traditions in Benin City. It focuses on the charismatic priests and priestesses who are possessed by a pantheon of deities, the communities of devotees, and the artists who make artifacts for their shrines. The visual arts are part of a wider configuration of practices that include song, dance, possession and healing. These practices provide the means for exploring the relationships of the visual to both the verbal and performance arts that feature at these shrines. The analysis in this book raises fundamental questions about how the art of Benin, and non-Western art histories more generally, are understood. The book throws critical light on the taken-for-granted assumptions which underpin current interpretations and presents an original and revisionist account of Benin art history.
In the American Southwest, Native people remain connected to the lands that have been their homes for centuries. In Home: Native People in the Southwest, they tell of that connection, of how it has survived and changed over time, and of how they are preserving it for future generations. Native artists express multiple visions of home in their art. The stories of the people who made the art are all different and yet, as Native people, they have a shared history and land, and their stories have common themes for all people. The permanent collection of the Heard Museum is a part of these stories. In the pages of this book, inspired by the Heard Museum's major new exhibition of the same name, you will encounter many expressions of the meanings of home as they are embodied in clay, pigment, plant materials, fiber, wood, metal, and words by people whose art is indivisible from their lives and whose lives are indivisible from the landscapes in which they live them.
One of the first people in Europe to consider the gifts which the Aztec ruler Montezuma gave to Hernan Cortes as works of art was Albrecht Durer: 'Nothing I have yet seen has given me such joy as the objects brought to the king from the new gold countries [...] Some pieces display an extraordinary skill; I have been astonished by the ingenuity of the inhabitants of those far distant lands,' he wrote. It was 1520 and those works had been sent to Brussels. The five centuries that have passed since the beauty of these objects was first noticed seem not to have been enough for the ancient cultures of Latin America to be fully understood. This catalogue of pre-Columbian art is a fresh attempt to examine and come to terms with artworks produced by a section of mankind that came to the attention of Europeans only after the voyages of Columbus and other explorers. It illustrates the collection of pre-Columbian art of Giancarlo and Inti Ligabue, one of the few collections of its kind in Italian hands: over 150 pieces from Mesoamerica and South America, an extraordinary corpus of objects which give testament to the excellence achieved by ancient artists. But it also tells the story of certain rare objects which belonged to the Medici Collection, one of Europe's greatest treasures. Among these are two atlatls, spear-throwers covered in gold-leaf from the Aztec or Mixtec cultures, a Taino necklace dating from the fourteenth or fifteenth century, and a Teotihuacan stone mask. These objects are accompanied by pieces from private European collections and a number of significant artworks from the Quai Branly Museum in Paris. Essays by leading scholars and archaeologists, such as C. Phillips, C.F. Baudez, J.M. Hoppan, J.J. Leyenard, F. Kauffmann Doig, C. Cavatrunci, D. Domenica, and M. Polia, weave both scientific and humanistic interpretations of Amerindian thought. The Giancarlo and Inti Ligabue Collection of masterpieces of ancient Latin American cultures is part of a huge and broad-ranging hoard of objects gathered over a period of almost fifty years.
Weaving designs of the Southwest.
A River Apart presents multi-vocal perspectives on the pottery of Cochiti and Santo Domingo Pueblos, located along the central Rio Grande Valley in New Mexico. Separated by a great river, Cochiti and Santo Domingo Pueblos shared a ceramic tradition for centuries until increasing contact with outsiders ushered in tumultuous changes that set the pueblos on divergent paths. Cochiti Pueblo more freely modified its traditional forms of painted pottery to appeal to new markets while the Santo Domingo Pueblo shunned the influences of the tourist trade and art market, continuing an artistic trajectory that was conservative and insular. A River Apart brings together a distinguished a team of anthropologists, artists, and art historians from Native and non-Native perspectives to examine the pottery traditions of the two Pueblos and decipher what discoveries can be made and identities established through these representations of material culture. As the essays reveal, the pottery represents more than anthropology's artifacts and art for the marketplace. From the pottery we learn much about the pueblos' history, myths and legends, communities, and the artist's responses to influences from the outside world. This volume is a fascinating case study in how cultures develop; how art, culture and community are interwoven; and how art is created, interpreted, valued, bought and sold. This publication is companion to an exhibition to open at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture (Museum of New Mexico) in Santa Fe in Fall 2008 and featuring over 200 Santo Domingo and Cochiti pots. A River Apart is a valuable addition to the libraries of those interested in Pueblo Indian pottery, Native American arts andculture, and southwestern history and anthropology.
This book documents the current revival and basketry from its leading practitioners, including basketmakers from the Hupa, Yurok, Karuk, Tolowa, Western Mono (Monache) of northern California; and the Great Basin tribes, including the Western Shoshone, Northern Paiute, Washoe, and Chemehuevi.
Back in print, expanded, and revised, the second edition of Navajo Pictorial Weaving is devoted to all categories of antique Navajo pictorial weaving. The second edition includes 92 new images of weavings discovered in the last three decades, many never before published or exhibited. Through these nearly 300 photos and short texts, both the novice and advanced collector can reach a better understanding of the enigmatic and unusual body of Navajo pictorial weaving. Also featured is a one-of-a-kind comprehensive chart of the Navajo ceremonial system. Offering the newest discoveries, this treasury reemphasizes that Navajo pictorial weaving is a truly American folk art. Significant pictorials are organized into eight chapters covering all major categories, including these and many others: Birds, Flora, Fauna & Livestock; Transportation, Technology, the Railroad and Its Influence; Yeis, Yeibichais, and Corn Yeis; and Kachinas, Masks, and Images from the Hopi.
The beautiful diversity of Hopi Kachina dolls is pictorially presented to show past, present, and evolving styles. These carved representations of ceremonial figures taking part in celebration of the Kachina religion are highly collected by Indian and white peoples alike. This book serves to explain, compare, and present the variety of dolls that are found through color pictures, line drawings and a concise text. The carvers are given a great deal of recognition throughout the book as the discussion covers the environment, tools, and prominence of these artists. An appendix lists 495 living artists. An introduction is by Frederick Dockstader, former director to the Museum of the American Indian in New York. Mr. Bromberg, a trader among the Hopi, shares his accumulated respect for the culture and people who produce them. His chapters evolved to answer questions by collectors and gallery workers. The result is a first-hand analysis of this contemporary and still changing art form that has both religious and commercial impact on the Hopi carvers. Only a trusted, sympathetic student of the Hopi culture could have compiled the background interpretations of the dolls and won the respect of the carvers.
This classic volume on the evocative and enigmatic pottery of the Mimbres people has become an irreplaceable design catalogue for contemporary Native American artists. Burt and Harriet (Hattie) Cosgrove were self-trained archaeologists who began excavating Mimbres materials in 1919. When their meticulous research came to the attention of Alfred V. Kidder of the Peabody Museum, he invited them to direct the Mimbres Valley Expedition at the Swarts Ranch in southern New Mexico on behalf of the Peabody.
Working in the summers of 1924 to 1927, the Cosgroves recovered nearly 10,000 artifacts at the Swarts site, including an extraordinary assemblage of Mimbres ceramics. Like their original 1932 report, this paperbound facsimile edition includes over 700 of Hattie Cosgrove's beautiful line drawings of individual Mimbres pots. It also presents a new introduction by archaeologist Steven A. LeBlanc, who reviews the eighty years of research on the Mimbres that have followed the Cosgroves' groundbreaking study. The Peabody's reissue of "The Swarts Ruin" once again makes available a rich resource for scholars, artists, and admirers of Native American art, and it places in historical context the Cosgroves' many contributions to North American archaeology.
A Hopi Indian will tell you that a kachina is a supernatural being who is impersonated by a man wearing a mask. Small wooden dolls carved in the likenesses of the various kachinas are used to help to teach Hopi children the tribal religion and traditions. Each child receives a doll made especially for him by his male relatives. He treasures the doll and studies it so that he can learn to recognised and respect the host of spirit kachinas that people the Hopi world. Kachinas are difficult to classify because different Hopi pueblos have different ideas about their appearance and their functions. The late Dr Harold Colton identified 266 different kinds of kachina dolls, and in this book he describes the meaning, the making, and the principal features of all of them.
The Yaka, a tribe in the southwestern corner of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, have for over a century produced figurative statuettes, masks, and other objects that have fascinated Western scholars, collectors, and explorers. This impressive book brings together some of the earliest examples, as well as some of the most visually striking, and explores their uses in installation and initiation ceremonies and curative rituals, examining their relationship to leadership, divination, and sorcery. Colonial influences as well as "anti-fetish" religious movements are studied for their impact on Yaka traditional art. The book includes 21 black-and-white illustrations and drawings accompanying the text, 62 color plates with commentary, and an annotated bibliography.
Hominids have always been obsessed with representing their own bodies. The first "selfies" were prehistoric negative hand images and human stick figures, followed by stone and ceramic representations of the human figure. Thousands of years later, moving via historic art and literature to contemporary social media, the contemporary term "selfie" was self-generated. The book illuminates some "selfies". This collection of critical essays about the fixation on the human self addresses a multi-faceted geographic set of cultures -- the Iberian Peninsula to pre-Columbian America and Hispanic America -- analysing such representations from medical, literal and metaphorical perspectives over centuries. Chapter contributions address the representation of the body itself as subject, in both visual and textual manners, and illuminate attempts at control of the environment, of perception, of behaviour and of actions, by artists and authors. Other chapters address the body as subjected to circumstance, representing the body as affected by factors such as illness, injury, treatment and death. These myriad effects on the body are interpreted through the brushes of painters and the pens of authors for social and/or personal control purposes. The essays reveal critics' insights when "selfies" are examined through a focused "lens" over a breadth of cultures. The result, complex and unique, is that what is viewed -- the visual art and literature under discussion -- becomes a mirror image, indistinguishable from the component viewing apparatus, the "lens".
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