Earlier this month, the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA) announced that this year’s Indian Market, the largest and most important Native arts market in the United States, would be postponed until 2021 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
In this new series, we asked curators and members of the Native arts community to spotlight five artists whose work they were looking forward to seeing at the 2020 Indian Market, with the hope that this can play a small part in making up for some of the exposure lost from the postponement of this year’s market. Our goal is to highlight Native artists who have continued to make important work amid these trying times.
First up, we asked Manuela Well-Off-Man, art historian and chief curator at the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe. Born and raised in Eastern Westphalia, Germany, Well-Off-Man previously served as curator at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and as curator of art at the Montana Museum of Art and Culture at the University of Montana in Missoula, Montana.
Anita Fields (Osage): Fields is nationally recognized for her unique rendering of ceramic sculptures and mixed-media installations, incorporating Osage symbolism. As a ceramic artist, she has created conceptual installations. She recently created stunning fabric art including Osage wedding regalia. Other textile works reference the complex layers and distortion of truths found in the written history of Indigenous cultures. —MW
Terran Last Gun (Piikani): Last Gun draws his inspiration from a variety of sources such as pop art, minimalism, color field, and geometric abstraction to depict pre-contact landscapes and engage with his Blackfoot ancestry. I especially like his use of color and the minimal aesthetic in his serigraphs! —MW
Kelly Church (Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians): It’s inspiring to see Kelly’s innovative approach to basketry art. She harvests and prepares all the materials for her contemporary basketry. Several of her works also address environmental issues: she has worked with Tribal Foresters, the USDA, and the Nature Conservancy on issues related to invasive pests that also destroy the natural resources for her art. —MW
Avis Charley (Spirit Lake Dakota/Diné): Charley’s strengths are her portraits of modern, strong Native women using the traditional art form of realistic portraiture — I especially like her painting of a female Native NoDAPL protester. She recently also became known for her ledger art. —MW
Ryan Singer (Diné): Ryan is part of a new generation of artists inspired by popular culture: his works blend traditional and contemporary Diné cultural references with sci-fi and gamer icons from mainstream sources in satirical ways. His works are currently on view in MoCNA’s Indigenous Futurisms: Transcending Past/Present/Future (a virtual online version can be accessed here). —MW
Ceramic fried eggs, critiques of real estate, and a whole booth dedicated to female-identifying saints caught my eye at Untitled, NADA, and Art Miami.
The Manhattan District Attorney’s office recovered 23 looted objects from Shelby White’s home over the last year and a half.
The award-winning Canadian artist explores notions of power through the imagery of science fiction in portraits, sculpture, and objects.
An egregious “anti-woke” billboard erected in Los Angeles attempts to sow division among Latino/a/x communities.
This week, missed signs of previous life on Mars, the appeal of forged art, and why are blue whales singing in lower octaves?
This affordable, interdisciplinary program with excellent facilities and private studios offers in-person instruction for 2023.
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed forcefully posits multiple parallels between the world Nan Goldin grew up in and the one she fights in today.
Your list of must-see, fun, insightful, and very Los Angeles art events this month, including Bob Thompson, Aimee Goguen, Uta Barth, the Transcendental Painting Group, and more.
The latest episode of this documentary series on PBS explores the meaning of home through handmade objects, hand built homes, and the artists who create them.
There is the singular artist and then there is the more exclusive club that has only one member. Harvey belongs to the latter.
The artists say the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma must sever ties with Poju Zabludowicz, whose wealth comes in part from Israeli defense contracting.
Rhode Island School of Design opens registration for its residential summer Pre-College program and year-round online intensive Advanced Program Online.
Vanessa Albury, whose eco-friendly ceramic sculptures help revive filter-feeder populations, is raising funds to complete her first film about the project.
An archeological exploration of the amphitheater’s sewers and water systems uncovered remnants of meat, vegetables, olives, nuts, and yes, pizza.