An exhibit of Native American art of the most extraordinary quality is coming to the Minneapolis Institute of Art, and it should put to rest any question of whether Indigenous art belongs in an art museum. "Art of the Native Americans: The Thaw Collection" is an exhibition of 110 pieces drawn from the Eugene and Clare Thaw Collection of North American Indian Art at the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York. Among the stunning pieces is the brilliant red Nimi'ipuu Horse Mask (ca. 1875-1900), containing intricate beadwork, feathers, ribbon, dyed horse hair, and ermine, and the Central Yup'ik Nepcetat Mask (ca. 1850), made from wood, feathers, fox teeth, sealskin, and seal blood. In addition to the beautiful pieces from the Fenimore museum, MIA Associate Curator Joe Horse Capture says he has also added elements to the exhibition that will provide a sense of connection between historical and contemporary Native American art. To give that context, people can watch video interviews with local Native American artists and leaders who testify about how Native art fits into their life. Interviewees include Navajo playwright Rhiana Yazzie, Navajo visual artist and curator Carolyn Anderson, and Yup'ik choreographer Emily Johnson. The opening day features family activities, music, and dancing from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, October 24.
Oct. 24-Jan. 9, 2010