Something incredible happened a few months ago. After Oklahoma lawyer Brett Chapman (Pawnee) started tweeting about the tomahawk of Ponca Chief Standing Bear, which is currently in Harvard University’s Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the revered object may actually be going home.
His short messages asked why the tomahawk was in the care of that institution and not with one of the two federally recognized Ponca tribes. The questions raised eyebrows, and as Cassie Packard reported for Hyperallergic, the museum later posted a statement on its website explaining that the museum and the Ponca tribe are “in active discussion about the homecoming of Chief Standing Bear’s pipe tomahawk belonging to the Ponca people.”
Chapman, who has Ponca heritage, joins me for this podcast to explain the history of the tomahawk and why the return of the heirloom is important.
Your list of must-see, fun, insightful, and very New York art events this month, including Xaviera Simmons, Cristina Iglesias, Mire Lee, and more.
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Artists reflect on histories of oppressive power structures in Brazil in this exhibition at the Visual Arts Center at the University of Texas at Austin.
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I inserted the text from five press releases into DALL-E and this is what it churned out.
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Union members called for salary increases and pledged to hold the museum accountable to “its lip-service to social justice.”
The museum offered some workers the option to forgo pay raises in exchange for keeping their jobs, union members told Hyperallergic.