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Native Fashion Now Opens: Virtual Tour

February 15, 2017
Orlando Dugi, Diné [Navajo] Born 1978, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Dress, headpiece, and cape, Desert Heat Collection, 2012 Dress: dyed silk, organza, feathers, beads, and 24-karat gold Cape: feathers, beads, and silver Headpiece: African porcupine quills and feathers Capt on loan from Amy Shea This ensemble reveals Dugi's keen eye for elegant eveningwear and luxurious detail. The headpiece's sharp quills add a sexy ganger to the dramatic volume and fluidity of the dress. Glittering beads capture the experience of watching all-night Diné ceremonies under a starry sky. Dugi owes a debt to the fashion designers Yves Saint Laurent and Valentino and to Dugi Diné grandmother, who wore elaborate clothing and accessories every day. Their love of opulent adornment, layering of textures, and draping are qualities that drive his work.

Orlando Dugi, Diné [Navajo]
Born 1978, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Dress, headpiece, and cape, Desert Heat Collection, 2012
Dress: dyed silk, organza, feathers, beads, and 24-karat gold
Cape: feathers, beads, and silver
Headpiece: African porcupine quills and feathers
Capt on loan from Amy Shea
This ensemble reveals Dugi’s keen eye for elegant eveningwear and luxurious detail. The headpiece’s sharp quills add a sexy ganger to the dramatic volume and fluidity of the dress. Glittering beads capture the experience of watching all-night Diné ceremonies under a starry sky. Dugi owes a debt to the fashion designers Yves Saint Laurent and Valentino and to Dugi Diné grandmother, who wore elaborate clothing and accessories every day. Their love of opulent adornment, layering of textures, and draping are qualities that drive his work.

Native Fashion Now

Native Fashion Now

Patricia Michaels, Taos Pueblo Born 1966, works in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico Cityscape dress, Project Runway, Season 11 Collection, 2012 Leather, paint, and silk On loan from Kathryn Rossi

Runway show
Ensembles and parasols by Patricia Michaels
Indian Market, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2011
Runway show, PM Waterlily
Fashion Week El Paseo, Palm Desert, California, 2015

Patricia Michael, Taos Pueblo Born 1966, works in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico Parasols, 2015 Handles by James Duran (Taos Pueblo) Blacksmith work by Frank Turley (born 1935) Salt cedar, metal, cloth, dye, hide, beads, and paint Commissioned by the Peabody Essex Museum

Patricia Michael, Taos Pueblo
Born 1966, works in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico
Parasols, 2015
Handles by James Duran (Taos Pueblo)
Blacksmith work by Frank Turley (born 1935)
Salt cedar, metal, cloth, dye, hide, beads, and paint
Commissioned by the Peabody Essex Museum

Patricia Michaels, Taos Pueblo Born 1966, works in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico Cityscape dress, Project Runway, Season 11 Collection, 2012 Leather, paint, and silk On loan from Kathryn Rossi

Patricia Michaels, Taos Pueblo
Born 1966, works in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico
Cityscape dress, Project Runway, Season 11 Collection, 2012
Leather, paint, and silk
On loan from Kathryn Rossi

Denis Wallace, Chugach Aleut Born 1957, works in Hilo, Hawaii and Samuel Wallace 1935-2010, worked in Hilo Hawaii Craftspeople Belt, 1992 Sterling silver, 14-karat gold, fossil ivory, and semiprecious stones On loan from the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, AT-58 This belt tells Denise Wallace's story of meeting influential Alaska Native artists during a group exhibition in Anchorage. Ten figures appear, separated by scrimshawed medallions, to celebrate the makers of boats, dolls, and masks, as well as basket weavers and ivory carvers. Northern Alaskan jewelry often condenses a story through imagery—a more permanent version of what is conveyed through dance and ceremony. Wallace's Aleut heritage is a major influence shaping her jewelry. She combines older Arctic artistic genres, such as stone carving, mask making, and storytelling, with Southwestern-style stone inlay and silver.

Denis Wallace, Chugach Aleut
Born 1957, works in Hilo, Hawaii
and Samuel Wallace [1935-2010], worked in Hilo Hawaii
Craftspeople Belt, 1992
Sterling silver, 14-karat gold, fossil ivory, and semiprecious stones
On loan from the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, AT-58
This belt tells Denise Wallace’s story of meeting influential Alaska Native artists during a group exhibition in Anchorage. Ten figures appear, separated by scrimshawed medallions, to celebrate the makers of boats, dolls, and masks, as well as basket weavers and ivory carvers. Northern Alaskan jewelry often condenses a story through imagery—a more permanent version of what is conveyed through dance and ceremony.
Wallace’s Aleut heritage is a major influence shaping her jewelry. She combines older Arctic artistic genres, such as stone carving, mask making, and storytelling, with Southwestern-style stone inlay and silver.

 

Denis Wallace, Chugach Aleut Born 1957, works in Hilo, Hawaii and Samuel Wallace 1935-2010, worked in Hilo Hawaii Craftspeople Belt, 1992 Sterling silver, 14-karat gold, fossil ivory, and semiprecious stones On loan from the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, AT-58 This belt tells Denise Wallace's story of meeting influential Alaska Native artists during a group exhibition in Anchorage. Ten figures appear, separated by scrimshawed medallions, to celebrate the makers of boats, dolls, and masks, as well as basket weavers and ivory carvers. Northern Alaskan jewelry often condenses a story through imagery—a more permanent version of what is conveyed through dance and ceremony. Wallace's Aleut heritage is a major influence shaping her jewelry. She combines older Arctic artistic genres, such as stone carving, mask making, and storytelling, with Southwestern-style stone inlay and silver.

Denis Wallace, Chugach Aleut
Born 1957, works in Hilo, Hawaii
and Samuel Wallace 1935-2010, worked in Hilo Hawaii
Craftspeople Belt [detail], 1992
Sterling silver, 14-karat gold, fossil ivory, and semiprecious stones
On loan from the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, AT-58
This belt tells Denise Wallace’s story of meeting influential Alaska Native artists during a group exhibition in Anchorage. Ten figures appear, separated by scrimshawed medallions, to celebrate the makers of boats, dolls, and masks, as well as basket weavers and ivory carvers. Northern Alaskan jewelry often condenses a story through imagery—a more permanent version of what is conveyed through dance and ceremony.
Wallace’s Aleut heritage is a major influence shaping her jewelry. She combines older Arctic artistic genres, such as stone carving, mask making, and storytelling, with Southwestern-style stone inlay and silver.

 

Orlando Dugi, Diné [Navajo] Born 1978, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico and Troy Sice, Zuni Pueblo Born 1977, works in Albuquerque, New Mexico The Guardian—Bringer of Thunder, Lightning and Rain handbag, 2013 Elk antler, stingray leather, parrot feathers, bobcat fur, rubies, shell, glass beads, and sterling silver On loan from Ellen and Bill Taubman

Orlando Dugi, Diné [Navajo]
Born 1978, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
and Troy Sice, Zuni Pueblo
Born 1977, works in Albuquerque, New Mexico
The Guardian—Bringer of Thunder, Lightning and Rain handbag, 2013
Elk antler, stingray leather, parrot feathers, bobcat fur, rubies, shell, glass beads, and sterling silver
On loan from Ellen and Bill Taubman

Charles Loloma, Hopi Pueblo 1921-1991, worked in Hotevilla, Hapi Pueblo, Arizona Bracelet, about 1975 Ironwood, silver, lapis lazuli, turquoise, coral, fossil ivory, and abalone shell On loan from Leslie M. Beebe and Bruce Nussbaum Loloma is widely considered the most renowned Native jeweler of his day, This landscape-in-miniature reveals his sources of inspiration: the colorful stepped mesas of Arizona and the sharp angles used by Frank Lloyd Wright, the 20th-century architect. Loloma's chunky inlays, vertical slabs, and exotic woods and stones depart from Southwestern silversmith conventions, which are heavy with silver, turquoise, and stampwork.

Charles Loloma, Hopi Pueblo
1921-1991, worked in Hotevilla, Hapi Pueblo, Arizona
Bracelet, about 1975
Ironwood, silver, lapis lazuli, turquoise, coral, fossil ivory, and abalone shell
On loan from Leslie M. Beebe and Bruce Nussbaum
Loloma is widely considered the most renowned Native jeweler of his day, This landscape-in-miniature reveals his sources of inspiration: the colorful stepped mesas of Arizona and the sharp angles used by Frank Lloyd Wright, the 20th-century architect. Loloma’s chunky inlays, vertical slabs, and exotic woods and stones depart from Southwestern silversmith conventions, which are heavy with silver, turquoise, and stampwork.

Lloyd Kiva New, Cherokee 1916-2002, worked in Santa Fe, New Mexico Dress, 1950s For Kiva Screen-printed cotton and metal On loan from Fashion by Robert Black with Doreen Picerne

Lloyd Kiva New, Cherokee
1916-2002, worked in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Dress, 1950s
For Kiva
Screen-printed cotton and metal
On loan from Fashion by Robert Black with Doreen Picerne

Lloyd Kiva New, Cherokee 1916-2002, worked in Santa Fe, New Mexico Dress, 1950s For Kiva Screen-printed cotton and metal On loan from Fashion by Robert Black with Doreen Picerne

Lloyd Kiva New, Cherokee
1916-2002, worked in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Dress, 1950s
For Kiva
Screen-printed cotton and metal
On loan from Fashion by Robert Black with Doreen Picerne

Dorothy Grant, Haida Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia Eagle Gala dress, 2013 For DG Gold Label Silk, tulle, synthetic fabrics, sequins, and floral appliqué Dorothy Grant, Haida Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia She-Worf tuxedo jacket and pants, 2014 For DG Gold Label Italian wool and embroidery On loan from Michael Horse Dorothy Grant blazed a trail as the first Native woman to gain an international following, paving the way for other Native designers with her stunning Feastwear tuxedos and other iconic Northwest Coast fashions for men and women. Spanning more than 30 years, her career reached a high point in 2016 when actor Duane E. Howard, who portrayed Elk Dog in the Academy Award-winning film The Revenant, wore Grant's Eagle Raven Shawl tuxedo design on Oscar's red carpet.

Dorothy Grant, Haida
Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia
Eagle Gala dress, 2013
For DG Gold Label
Silk, tulle, synthetic fabrics, sequins, and floral appliqué
Dorothy Grant, Haida
Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia
She-Wolf tuxedo jacket and pants, 2014
For DG Gold Label
Italian wool and embroidery
On loan from Michael Horse
Dorothy Grant blazed a trail as the first Native woman to gain an international following, paving the way for other Native designers with her stunning Feastwear tuxedos and other iconic Northwest Coast fashions for men and women. Spanning more than 30 years, her career reached a high point in 2016 when actor Duane E. Howard, who portrayed Elk Dog in the Academy Award-winning film The Revenant, wore Grant’s Eagle Raven Shawl tuxedo design on Oscar’s red carpet.

Dorothy Grant, Haida Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia Eagle Gala dress, 2013 For DG Gold Label Silk, tulle, synthetic fabrics, sequins, and floral appliqué

Dorothy Grant, Haida
Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia
Eagle Gala [detail] dress, 2013
For DG Gold Label
Silk, tulle, synthetic fabrics, sequins, and floral appliqué

Dorothy Grant, Haida Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia She-Worf tuxedo jacket and pants, 2014 For DG Gold Label Italian wool and embroidery On loan from Michael Horse

Dorothy Grant, Haida
Born 1955, works in Vancouver, British Columbia
She-Wolf [detail] tuxedo jacket and pants, 2014
For DG Gold Label
Italian wool and embroidery
On loan from Michael Horse

Frankie Welch, Cherokee Descent Born 1924, worked in Alexandria, Virginia Dress designed for First Lady Betty Ford, 1974 Silk brocade On loan from the Gerald R. Ford Museum, 1983.88.3 In her posh boutique in Alexandria, Welch styled Washington's elite, including five First Ladies, from the 1960s through the '80s. She sold her own line alongside those of Halston, Oscar de la Renta, and other leading designers. This brocade gown, designed for and worn by First Lady Betty Ford, combines a sleek modern silhoutte, exquisite workmanship, and colors that suggest power and prestige—a well-chosen combination for the president's wife. First Lady Betty Fod wearing this dress, White House Christmas Party, December 17, 1974 Courtsey of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library

Frankie Welch, Cherokee Descent
Born 1924, worked in Alexandria, Virginia
Dress designed for First Lady Betty Ford, 1974
Silk brocade
On loan from the Gerald R. Ford Museum, 1983.88.3
In her posh boutique in Alexandria, Welch styled Washington’s elite, including five First Ladies, from the 1960s through the ’80s. She sold her own line alongside those of Halston, Oscar de la Renta, and other leading designers. This brocade gown, designed for and worn by First Lady Betty Ford, combines a sleek modern silhoutte, exquisite workmanship, and colors that suggest power and prestige—a well-chosen combination for the president’s wife.
First Lady Betty Fod wearing this dress, White House Christmas Party, December 17, 1974
Courtsey of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library

Derek Jagodzinsky, Whitefish Cree Born 1984, works in Edmonton, Alberta Dress, belt, and handbag, Four Directions Collection, Spring/Summer 2014 For LUXX ready-to-wear Spandex and synthetic blend Cree language syllabics swirl around the waist of this fringe dress, encircling the wearer at the center of her being. This garment celebrates the Cree language, still spoken daily by tribal members in Canada depite government efforts to suppress it in the past. Its appearance on the runway conveys Jagodzinsky's ongoing message: "We will succeed."

Derek Jagodzinsky, Whitefish Cree
Born 1984, works in Edmonton, Alberta
Dress, belt, and handbag, Four Directions Collection, Spring/Summer 2014
For LUXX ready-to-wear
Spandex and synthetic blend
Cree language syllabics swirl around the waist of this fringe dress, encircling the wearer at the center of her being. This garment celebrates the Cree language, still spoken daily by tribal members in Canada depite government efforts to suppress it in the past. Its appearance on the runway conveys Jagodzinsky’s ongoing message: “We will succeed.”

David Gaussoin, Diné [Navajo] and Picuris Pueblo Born 1975 and Wayne Nez Gaussoin, Dine and Picuris Pueblo Born 1982 Both work in Santa Fe, New Mexico Postmodern Boa, 2009 Stainless steel, sterling silver, enamel paint, and feathers Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by Leslie Beebe and Bruce Nussbaum, 2016.32.1 Consuelo Pascual, Diné [Navajo] and Maya Born in 1981, works in Mesquite, New Mexico Gunmetal Pleat dress, 2010 Taffeta

David Gaussoin, Diné [Navajo] and Picuris Pueblo
Born 1975
and Wayne Nez Gaussoin, Diné and Picuris Pueblo
Born 1982
Both work in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Postmodern Boa, 2009
Stainless steel, sterling silver, enamel paint, and feathers
Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by Leslie Beebe and Bruce Nussbaum, 2016.32.1
Consuelo Pascual, Diné [Navajo] and Maya
Born in 1981, works in Mesquite, New Mexico
Gunmetal Pleat dress, 2010
Taffeta

Bethany Yellowtail, Apsáalooke [Crow] and Northern Cheyenne Born 1988, works in Los Angeles, California Old Time Floral Elk Tooth dress, Apsaalooke Collection, 2014 For B. Yellowtail Lace, leather applique, and elk teeth Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase, 2015.22.1 Bethany Yellowtail's family heirlooms, including beaded garments and photographs of her relatives wearing elk-tooth dresses, inspired this piece. A line of elk teeth, symbolizing Apsaalooke wealth, runs along the sleeves and chest, popping against the garment's delicate Italian-made lace and leather floral appliques. The interplay between dark and light, foreground and background, defines Crow aesthetics and suggest balance—something Yellowtail aspires to achieve aesthetically and spiritually while living in Los Angeles, far from her Montana home.

Bethany Yellowtail, Apsáalooke [Crow] and Northern Cheyenne
Born 1988, works in Los Angeles, California
Old Time Floral Elk Tooth dress, Apsáalooke Collection, 2014
For B. Yellowtail
Lace, leather applique, and elk teeth
Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase, 2015.22.1
Bethany Yellowtail’s family heirlooms, including beaded garments and photographs of her relatives wearing elk-tooth dresses, inspired this piece. A line of elk teeth, symbolizing Apsáalooke wealth, runs along the sleeves and chest, popping against the garment’s delicate Italian-made lace and leather floral appliques. The interplay between dark and light, foreground and background, defines Crow aesthetics and suggest balance—something Yellowtail aspires to achieve aesthetically and spiritually while living in Los Angeles, far from her Montana home.

Robin Waynee, Saginaw Chippewa Born 1971, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Necklace with detachable brooch pendant, 2014 18-karat gold, blackened sterling silver, Tahitian pearl, sphene, diamonds, and pink sapphires

Robin Waynee, Saginaw Chippewa
Born 1971, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Necklace with detachable brooch pendant, 2014
18-karat gold, blackened sterling silver, Tahitian pearl, sphene, diamonds, and pink sapphires

Maria Samora, Taos Pueblo Born 1975, works in Taos, New Mexico Lily Pad bracelet, 2014 18-karat gold, palladium with gold, and diamonds

Maria Samora, Taos Pueblo
Born 1975, works in Taos, New Mexico
Lily Pad bracelet, 2014
18-karat gold, palladium with gold, and diamonds

Virgil Ortiz, Cochiti Pueblo Born 1969, works in Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico and Donna Karan Born 1948, works in New York City Skirt, Spring/Summer 2003 For Donna Karan Cotton On loan from Ellen and Bill Taubman In 2002, Ortiz was selling ceramics and couture at Santa Fe's Indian Market when the New York fashion powerhouse Donna Karan strolled over. Struck by Ortiz's bold forms and motifs, whe invited him to collaborate on her 2003 couture collection. They worked together to marry her silhouettes and fabrics with his graphic patterns, which symbolize wild spinach, clouds, and fertility. Their partnership is an inspiring example of collaboration between artists, cultures, and businesses.

Virgil Ortiz, Cochiti Pueblo
Born 1969, works in Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico
and Donna Karan
Born 1948, works in New York City
Skirt, Spring/Summer 2003
For Donna Karan
Cotton
On loan from Ellen and Bill Taubman
In 2002, Ortiz was selling ceramics and couture at Santa Fe’s Indian Market when the New York fashion powerhouse Donna Karan strolled over. Struck by Ortiz’s bold forms and motifs, whe invited him to collaborate on her 2003 couture collection. They worked together to marry her silhouettes and fabrics with his graphic patterns, which symbolize wild spinach, clouds, and fertility. Their partnership is an inspiring example of collaboration between artists, cultures, and businesses.

Wendy Ponca, Osage Born 1960, works in Fairfax, Osage Reservation, Oklahoma Dresses, 2015 Dresses and accessories: Mylar, fox fur, golden and bald eagle feathers, crystals, space-shuttle glass, and shell Mannequins painted by the artist Mylar, a material used in space shuttles, doesn't seem like the typical stuff of Native fashion, but these are the real deal. This reflective fabric recalls the Sky World, home of the ancestors in Osage creation stories. And in motion, Mylar actually makes a crinkling sound, an auditory reminder of this ancestral connection. Ponca taught fashion at the Institute of American Indian Arts. In the mid-1980s she cofounded a collective of Native designers, models, and artists, establishing Santa Fe as a center for Native haute couture.

Wendy Ponca, Osage
Born 1960, works in Fairfax, Osage Reservation, Oklahoma
Dresses, 2015
Dresses and accessories: Mylar, fox fur, golden and bald eagle feathers, crystals, space-shuttle glass, and shell
Mannequins painted by the artist
Mylar, a material used in space shuttles, doesn’t seem like the typical stuff of Native fashion, but these are the real deal. This reflective fabric recalls the Sky World, home of the ancestors in Osage creation stories. And in motion, Mylar actually makes a crinkling sound, an auditory reminder of this ancestral connection.
Ponca taught fashion at the Institute of American Indian Arts. In the mid-1980s she cofounded a collective of Native designers, models, and artists, establishing Santa Fe as a center for Native haute couture.

Wendy Ponca, Osage Born 1960, works in Fairfax, Osage Reservation, Oklahoma Dresses, 2015 Dresses and accessories: Mylar, fox fur, golden and bald eagle feathers, crystals, space-shuttle glass, and shell Mannequins painted by the artist Mylar, a material used in space shuttles, doesn't seem like the typical stuff of Native fashion, but these are the real deal. This reflective fabric recalls the Sky World, home of the ancestors in Osage creation stories. And in motion, Mylar actually makes a crinkling sound, an auditory reminder of this ancestral connection. Ponca taught fashion at the Institute of American Indian Arts. In the mid-1980s she cofounded a collective of Native designers, models, and artists, establishing Santa Fe as a center for Native haute couture.

Wendy Ponca, Osage
Born 1960, works in Fairfax, Osage Reservation, Oklahoma
Dresses, 2015
Dresses and accessories: Mylar, fox fur, golden and bald eagle feathers, crystals, space-shuttle glass, and shell
Mannequins painted by the artist
Mylar, a material used in space shuttles, doesn’t seem like the typical stuff of Native fashion, but these are the real deal. This reflective fabric recalls the Sky World, home of the ancestors in Osage creation stories. And in motion, Mylar actually makes a crinkling sound, an auditory reminder of this ancestral connection.
Ponca taught fashion at the Institute of American Indian Arts. In the mid-1980s she cofounded a collective of Native designers, models, and artists, establishing Santa Fe as a center for Native haute couture.

Say It with Sole Louie Gong merges art and activism in his custom-designed sneakers. Bored with the styles available in stores, he bought a plain pair of Vans, the classic skateboarding slip-ons, and used Sharpies to decorate them—a spontaneous moment of self-expression. He has since decorated more than 200 pairs of street sneakers, giving each its own contours, colors, and lines. His designs integrate graffiti influences from Seattle's urban environment with designs called formlines—heavily outlined abstract figures and motifs—derived from his Coast Salish background. Gong aims to raise awareness of issues related to his mixed heritage and has established programs in the Seattle area that help kids express themselves by decorating their footwear. Louie Gong, Nooksack and Squamish Born 1974, works in Seattle, Washington Wolf Chucks, 2015 Fabric dye and acrylic on sneakers

Say It with Sole
Louie Gong merges art and activism in his custom-designed sneakers. Bored with the styles available in stores, he bought a plain pair of Vans, the classic skateboarding slip-ons, and used Sharpies to decorate them—a spontaneous moment of self-expression. He has since decorated more than 200 pairs of street sneakers, giving each its own contours, colors, and lines.
His designs integrate graffiti influences from Seattle’s urban environment with designs called formlines—heavily outlined abstract figures and motifs—derived from his Coast Salish background. Gong aims to raise awareness of issues related to his mixed heritage and has established programs in the Seattle area that help kids express themselves by decorating their footwear.
Louie Gong, Nooksack and Squamish
Born 1974, works in Seattle, Washington
Wolf Chucks, 2015
Fabric dye and acrylic on sneakers

Fresh Takes Ever since the graphic tee emerged as a fashion statement in the 1970s, designers have used T-shirts to flaunt individuality and voice political protest. For young designers, these affordable, easy-to-produce shirts offer a way to grab attention and express opinion. Jared Yazzie's Native Americans Discovered Columbus T-shirts reclaims America as indigenous country, and his Mis-Rep tee challenges the use of images of Native people as sports mascots. For Yazzie and the other T-shirt designers, words are weapons, provoking people to think harder about history. Jared Yazzie, Dine (Navajo) Born in 1989, works in Chandien, Arizona ?, 2014 For ? Cotton

Fresh Takes
Ever since the graphic tee emerged as a fashion statement in the 1970s, designers have used T-shirts to flaunt individuality and voice political protest. For young designers, these affordable, easy-to-produce shirts offer a way to grab attention and express opinion.
Jared Yazzie’s Native Americans Discovered Columbus T-shirts reclaims America as indigenous country, and his Mis-Rep tee challenges the use of images of Native people as sports mascots. For Yazzie and the other T-shirt designers, words are weapons, provoking people to think harder about history.
Jared Yazzie, Diné [Navajo]
Born in 1989, works in Chandien, Arizona
Misrep, 2014
For OXDX Clothing
Cotton

Jared Yazzie, Diné [Navajo] Born in 1989, works in Chandien, Arizona Native Americans Discovered Columbus T-shirt, 2012 For ? Cotton

Jared Yazzie, Diné [Navajo]
Born in 1989, works in Chandien, Arizona
Native Americans Discovered Columbus T-shirt, 2012
For OCDX Clothing
Cotton

Dustin Martin, Diné [Navajo] Born, 1989, works in Albuquerque, New Mexico Ceci n'est pas un conciliateur [This is not a peacemaker] T-shirt, 2013 For S. O. L. O. Cotton

Dustin Martin, Diné [Navajo]
Born, 1989, works in Albuquerque, New Mexico
Ceci n’est pas un conciliateur [This is not a peacemaker] T-shirt, 2013
For S. O. L. O.
Cotton

Jolene Nenibah Yazzie, Diné [Navajo] Born 1968, work in the Southwest Warrior Women T-Shirt Cotton

Jolene Nenibah Yazzie, Diné [Navajo]
Born 1978, work in the Southwest
Warrior Women T-Shirt
Cotton

Jeremy Arviso, Diné [Navajo] Hopi, Pima, and Tohono O'Odham Born 1978, works in Phoenix, Arizona Definition T-shirt, 2013 For Noble Savage Cotton

Jeremy Arviso, Diné [Navajo]
Hopi, Pima, and Tohono O’Odham
Born 1978, works in Phoenix, Arizona
Definition T-shirt, 2013
For Noble Savage
Cotton

Dustinn Craig White Mountain Apache and Dine (Navajo), born 1975 Young Raiders, 2014 For 4-Wheel War Pony 9 minutes, 38 seconds, looped Douglas Miles, San Carlos Apache and Akimel O'Odham Born 1963, works in San Carlos, San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, Arizonia T-shirt, pants, cap, belt with buckle, and skate shoes, 2008-15 For Apache Skateboards and Valcorn Stone-Age T-shirt: Cotton, 2010 Pants: denim and paint, 2015 Cap: cotton, 2010 Belt with buckle: leather and pewter, 2010 Skate shoes: suede and rubber, for lpath, 2008

Dustinn Craig
White Mountain Apache and Dine (Navajo), born 1975
Young Raiders, 2014
For 4-Wheel War Pony
9 minutes, 38 seconds, looped
Douglas Miles, San Carlos Apache and Akimel O’Odham
Born 1963, works in San Carlos, San Carlos Apache
Indian Reservation, Arizonia
T-shirt, pants, cap, belt with buckle, and skate shoes, 2008-15
For Apache Skateboards and Valcom Stone-Age
T-shirt: Cotton, 2010
Pants: denim and paint, 2015
Cap: cotton, 2010
Belt with buckle: leather and pewter, 2010
Skate shoes: suede and rubber, for lpath, 2008
Miles fuses bold, graffiti-inspired graphics with Apache iconography and language. Years ago he painted his first skateboard, for his son. His brand, Apache Skateboards—the first Native-owned skateboard company—gre from that first deck, and soon it included a line of streetwear. Between 2009-2010, Miles collaborated with the internationally popular skate brand Volcom to create its Stone-Age product line. His mission is to empower Native youth and highlight social issues that confront their communities today.

Douglas Miles, San Carlos Apache and Akimel O'Odham Born 1963, works in San Carlos, San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, Arizonia The Original Apache Skateboard deck, 2007-08 For Apache Skateboards Acrylic on wood

Douglas Miles, San Carlos Apache and Akimel O’Odham
Born 1963, works in San Carlos, San Carlos Apache
Indian Reservation, Arizonia
The Original Apache Skateboard deck, 2007-08
For Apache Skateboards
Acrylic on wood

Niio Perkins, Akwesasne Mohawk Born 1980, works in Akwesasne, St. Regis Mohawk Reservation, New York Emma ensemble, 2010 Cotton, velvet, glass beads, and metal pins On loan from the Southwest Museum of the American Indian Collection, Autry National Center, Jackie Autry Purchase Award, American Indian Arts Marketplace, 2010, 2010.62.1-7 For Perkins, a box of beads holds endless possibilities. She poured her heart into this elaborate ensemble—fit for a traditional wedding—and titled it Emma, a favorite name. She likens the outfit to a close friend she spent months getting to know. Beadwork is deeply rooted in Perkins' Native heritage. She embraces its power to stimulate community involvement and pride: "Our designs are like stories, thoughtfully woven into a ceremonial dress. They capture personality and identity." Elizabeth James-Perry, Aquinnah Wampanoag Born 1973, works in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts Blouse, skirt, sash, moccasins, wampum friendship collar and earrings, and bracelet, 2014-15 Blouse and skirt: linen with trade silver and ribbons Sash: oblique-weave wool and beads Moccasins: leather with glass beads Collar and earrings: leather, glass beads, and quahog shell Bracelet: pocupine quills "The colors, textures, the creative rhythm of someone...weaving and threading and beading together a certain pattern; it's like telling a story. Being part of that storytelling process is central to my identity as a Wampanoag woman." — Elizabeth James-Perry

Niio Perkins, Akwesasne Mohawk
Born 1980, works in Akwesasne, St. Regis Mohawk Reservation, New York
Emma ensemble, 2010
Cotton, velvet, glass beads, and metal pins
On loan from the Southwest Museum of the American Indian Collection, Autry National Center, Jackie Autry Purchase Award, American Indian Arts Marketplace, 2010, 2010.62.1-7
For Perkins, a box of beads holds endless possibilities. She poured her heart into this elaborate ensemble—fit for a traditional wedding—and titled it Emma, a favorite name. She likens the outfit to a close friend she spent months getting to know.
Beadwork is deeply rooted in Perkins’ Native heritage. She embraces its power to stimulate community involvement and pride: “Our designs are like stories, thoughtfully woven into a ceremonial dress. They capture personality and identity.”
Elizabeth James-Perry, Aquinnah Wampanoag
Born 1973, works in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts
Blouse, skirt, sash, moccasins, wampum friendship collar and earrings, and bracelet, 2014-15
Blouse and skirt: linen with trade silver and ribbons
Sash: oblique-weave wool and beads
Moccasins: leather with glass beads
Collar and earrings: leather, glass beads, and quahog shell
Bracelet: pocupine quills
“The colors, textures, the creative rhythm of someone…weaving and threading and beading together a certain pattern; it’s like telling a story. Being part of that storytelling process is central to my identity as a Wampanoag woman.”
— Elizabeth James-Perry

Elizabeth James-Perry, Aquinnah Wampanoag Born 1973, works in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts Blouse, skirt, sash, moccasins, wampum friendship collar and earrings, and bracelet, 2014-15 Blouse and skirt: linen with trade silver and ribbons Sash: oblique-weave wool and beads Moccasins: leather with glass beads Collar and earrings: leather, glass beads, and quahog shell Bracelet: pocupine quills "The colors, textures, the creative rhythm of someone...weaving and threading and beading together a certain pattern; it's like telling a story. Being part of that storytelling process is central to my identity as a Wampanoag woman." — Elizabeth James-Perry

Elizabeth James-Perry, Aquinnah Wampanoag
Born 1973, works in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts
Blouse, skirt, sash, moccasins, wampum friendship collar and earrings, and bracelet, 2014-15
Blouse and skirt: linen with trade silver and ribbons
Sash: oblique-weave wool and beads
Moccasins: leather with glass beads
Collar and earrings: leather, glass beads, and quahog shell
Bracelet: pocupine quills
“The colors, textures, the creative rhythm of someone…weaving and threading and beading together a certain pattern; it’s like telling a story. Being part of that storytelling process is central to my identity as a Wampanoag woman.”
— Elizabeth James-Perry

Kenneth Williams Jr., Northern Arapaho and Seneca Born 1983, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico He Was Inconic, 2014 Glass beads, turquoise, coral, seed pearls, brass, wool, yarn, brain-tanned hide, gold, and human hair On loan from the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art Reverse side of He Was Iconic. This piece honors the Native jeweler Charles Loloma, whose mark can be seen in the Pathbreakers gallery. Photo courtesy of the artist.

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Jonathan Perry, Aquinnah Wampanoag Born 1976, works in Aquinnah, Massachusetts Blue Heron necklace, 2014 Slate, copper, glass trade beads, and sinew "I am grounded in the traditions of my ocean-going ancestors. I consider designs by examining the raw materials closely and drawing my images from the grain, hues, and patina of wood, stone, and copper. I enjoy using the materials and knowledge handed down from my ancestors to express my understanding of the natural world as well as the changes over time since our creation." — Jonathan Perry

Jonathan Perry, Aquinnah Wampanoag
Born 1976, works in Aquinnah, Massachusetts
Blue Heron necklace, 2014
Slate, copper, glass trade beads, and sinew
“I am grounded in the traditions of my ocean-going ancestors. I consider designs by examining the raw materials closely and drawing my images from the grain, hues, and patina of wood, stone, and copper. I enjoy using the materials and knowledge handed down from my ancestors to express my understanding of the natural world as well as the changes over time since our creation.”
— Jonathan Perry

Mike Bird-Romero, Ohkay Owingeh (San Juan) and Taos Pueblos Born 1946, works at Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, New Mexico Four bracelets, 2000-10 Top left: sterling silver, spiny oyster shell, and turquoise Top right: sterling silver, spiny oyster shell, and abalone shell Bottom left: sterling silver, abalone shell, and onyx Bottom right: sterling silver, onyx, and turquoise

Mike Bird-Romero, Ohkay Owingeh [San Juan] and Taos Pueblos
Born 1946, works at Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, New Mexico
Four bracelets, 2000-10
Top left: sterling silver, spiny oyster shell, and turquoise
Top right: sterling silver, spiny oyster shell, and abalone shell
Bottom left: sterling silver, abalone shell, and onyx
Bottom right: sterling silver, onyx, and turquoise

Keri Ataumbi, Kiowa Born 1971, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Beach Water Drop earrings and Mussel Shell necklace, 2013-14 Sterling silver, diamonds, and 22-karat gold Each piece of Ataumbi's jewelry forms a small sculpture, enhanced when worn on the body. She created the delicate mussel-shell beads using a hydraulic press, etching tools, and a soldering iron. Rather than focus on traditional form or potential markets, she seeks inspiration in curret visual culture, the history and theory of modern art, and her personal aesthetic, which blends natural organic forms with sleek modern design and technology.

Keri Ataumbi, Kiowa
Born 1971, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Beach Water Drop earrings and Mussel Shell necklace, 2013-14
Sterling silver, diamonds, and 22-karat gold
Each piece of Ataumbi’s jewelry forms a small sculpture, enhanced when worn on the body. She created the delicate mussel-shell beads using a hydraulic press, etching tools, and a soldering iron. Rather than focus on traditional form or potential markets, she seeks inspiration in curret visual culture, the history and theory of modern art, and her personal aesthetic, which blends natural organic forms with sleek modern design and technology.

Kenneth Williams Jr., Northern Arapaho and Seneca Born 1983, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico He Was Inconic, 2014 Glass beads, turquoise, coral, seed pearls, brass, wool, yarn, brain-tanned hide, gold, and human hair On loan from the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art Reverse side of He Was Iconic. This piece honors the Native jeweler Charles Loloma, whose mark can be seen in the Pathbreakers gallery. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Kenneth Williams Jr., Northern Arapaho and Seneca
Born 1983, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
He Was Inconic, 2014
Glass beads, turquoise, coral, seed pearls, brass, wool, yarn, brain-tanned hide, gold, and human hair
On loan from the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art
Reverse side of He Was Iconic. This piece honors the Native jeweler Charles Loloma, whose mark can be seen in the Pathbreakers gallery. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Toni Williams, Northern Arapaho Born 1953, works in Taylorsville, Utah Kimono and obi, 2011 Silk with applique Anonymous loan

Toni Williams, Northern Arapaho
Born 1953, works in Taylorsville, Utah
Kimono and obi, 2011
Silk with applique
Anonymous loan

Toni Williams, Northern Arapaho Born 1953, works in Taylorsville, Utah Kimono and obi, 2011 Silk with applique Anonymous loan

Toni Williams, Northern Arapaho
Born 1953, works in Taylorsville, Utah
Kimono and obi [detail], 2011
Silk with applique
Anonymous loan

Dwayne Wilcox, Oglala Lakota Born 1957, works in Rapid City, South Dakota Medicine Hat, 2013 Vintage paper and pigments

Dwayne Wilcox, Oglala Lakota
Born 1957, works in Rapid City, South Dakota
Medicine Hat, 2013
Vintage paper and pigments

Teri Greeves, Kiowa Born 1970, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Indian Parade Umbrella, 1999 Brain-tanned deer hide, glass beads, abalone shell, Bisbee turquoise, cloth, brass and nickel studs, Indian bead nickels, and antique umbrella frame On loan from Gilbert Waldman

Teri Greeves, Kiowa
Born 1970, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Indian Parade Umbrella, 1999
Brain-tanned deer hide, glass beads, abalone shell, Bisbee turquoise, cloth, brass and nickel studs, Indian bead nickels, and antique umbrella frame
On loan from Gilbert Waldman

Dallin Maybee, Northern Arapaho and Seneca Born 1974 and Laura Shepperd Born 1957 Both work in Santa Fe, New Mexico Jewelry by Dallin Maybee, 2015 Corset: silk, cotton, and steel Skirt: silk shantung Necklace: dentalium shell and brain-tanned hide Earrings: sterling silver, 24-karat gold, and mammoth ivory On loan from Portland Art Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by an ananymous donor

Dallin Maybee, Northern Arapaho and Seneca
Born 1974
and Laura Shepperd
Born 1957
Both work in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Jewelry by Dallin Maybee, 2015
Corset: silk, cotton, and steel
Skirt: silk shantung
Necklace: dentalium shell and brain-tanned hide
Earrings: sterling silver, 24-karat gold, and mammoth ivory
On loan from Portland Art Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by an ananymous donor

Dallin Maybee, Northern Arapaho and Seneca Born 1974, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Bracelet, 2015 Sterling silver, mammoth ivory, coral, agate, and jet Courtesy of the designer

Dallin Maybee, Northern Arapaho and Seneca
Born 1974, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Bracelet, 2015
Sterling silver, mammoth ivory, coral, agate, and jet
Courtesy of the designer

Dallin Maybee, Northern Arapaho and Seneca Born 1974, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Bracelet, 2015 Sterling silver, mammoth ivory, coral, agate, and jet Courtesy of the designer

Dallin Maybee, Northern Arapaho and Seneca
Born 1974, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Bracelet, 2015
Sterling silver, mammoth ivory, coral, agate, and jet
Courtesy of the designer

Kevin Pourier, Oglala Lakota Rez Bans glasses, 2009 Buffalo horn, malachite, gold and white mother-of-pearl, coral, lapis lazuli, sandstone, metal, and glass

Kevin Pourier, Oglala Lakota
Rez Bans glasses, 2009
Buffalo horn, malachite, gold and white mother-of-pearl, coral, lapis lazuli, sandstone, metal, and glass

Margaret Wood, Diné [Navajo] and Seminole Born 1950, works in Phoenix, Arizona Biil (Blanket Dress), 1980s Wool On loan from the Heard Museum, gift of Mr. Torn Galbraith and Ms. Margaret Wood, NA-SW-NA-C-82 In this re-creation of the classic 19th-century Navajo blanket dress, Wood kept the characteristic palette of navy and red and the stepped pattern. She updated the cut, changing it from knee-length to floor-length, and added a bateau neckline.

Margaret Wood, Diné [Navajo] and Seminole
Born 1950, works in Phoenix, Arizona
Biil (Blanket Dress), 1980s
Wool
On loan from the Heard Museum, gift of Mr. Torn Galbraith and Ms. Margaret Wood, NA-SW-NA-C-82
In this re-creation of the classic 19th-century Navajo blanket dress, Wood kept the characteristic palette of navy and red and the stepped pattern. She updated the cut, changing it from knee-length to floor-length, and added a bateau neckline.

Juanita Lee, Kewa (Santo Domingo) Pueblo 1910-1974, worked at Kewa Pueblo, New Mexico Dress and belt, 1970 Commerical fabric and embroidery thread On loan from the Heard Museum, gift of Mareen Allen Nichols, 4353 29 A-C

Juanita Lee, Kewa [Santo Domingo] Pueblo
1910-1974, worked at Kewa Pueblo, New Mexico
Dress and belt, 1970
Commerical fabric and embroidery thread
On loan from the Heard Museum, gift of Mareen Allen Nichols, 4353 29 A-C

D. Y. Begay, Diné [Navajo] Born 1953, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Binighadziltloni (Woven Though) serape, 2012 Wool and natural dyes After visiting Peru, the fourth-generation weaver Begay created this Dine version of a Peruvian serape. Its abstract pattern derives from the landscape of the Dine homeland in the American Southwest, and the T shape refers to Spider Woman's cross. This holy character in Dine cosmology holds particular significance for Begay: Sider Woman taught the Dine people to weave.

D. Y. Begay, Diné [Navajo]
Born 1953, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Binighadziltloni (Woven Though) serape, 2012
Wool and natural dyes
After visiting Peru, the fourth-generation weaver Begay created this Dine version of a Peruvian serape. Its abstract pattern derives from the landscape of the Dine homeland in the American Southwest, and the T shape refers to Spider Woman’s cross. This holy character in Dine cosmology holds particular significance for Begay: Sider Woman taught the Dine people to weave.

 

Kenneth Williams Jr., Northern Arapaho and Seneca Born 1983, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Styling of the ensemble Moccasins: glass beads, wool broadcloth, brass, wool, yarn, and brain-tanned hide by Agnes Spoonhunter Logan (born 1951, Northern Arapaho), late 1990s Shirt and pants: dyed cotton; Blazer: linen with painted designs by Thomas Haukaas (born 1950, Sicangu Lakota), 2013 Thomas Haukaas designed this stunning linen blazer for his friend Kenneth Williams Jr. to wear for the opening of a museum exhibition of Williams' work. Haukaas decorated the jacket in a classic Plains pictorial style, showing high-ranking warriors on horseback. Traditionally painted on buffalo hides and tipis, such images often recorded counting coup—feats in battle or hunting that brought prestige to the warrior and his family. The designs on this jacket serve a similar function: Haukaas's riders and horses celebrate his friend's achievements as an artist, a contemporary equivalent of counting coup.

Kenneth Williams Jr., Northern Arapaho and Seneca
Born 1983, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Styling of the ensemble
Moccasins: glass beads, wool broadcloth, brass, wool, yarn, and brain-tanned hide by Agnes Spoonhunter Logan (born 1951, Northern Arapaho), late 1990s
Shirt and pants: dyed cotton; Blazer: linen with painted designs by Thomas Haukaas (born 1950, Sicangu Lakota), 2013
Thomas Haukaas designed this stunning linen blazer for his friend Kenneth Williams Jr. to wear for the opening of a museum exhibition of Williams’ work. Haukaas decorated the jacket in a classic Plains pictorial style, showing high-ranking warriors on horseback. Traditionally painted on buffalo hides and tipis, such images often recorded counting coup—feats in battle or hunting that brought prestige to the warrior and his family. The designs on this jacket serve a similar function: Haukaas’s riders and horses celebrate his friend’s achievements as an artist, a contemporary equivalent of counting coup.

Maya Stewart, Chickasaw, Creek, and Choctaw Descent Born 1979, works in Los Angeles Carmen clutch, 2010 Calfskin

Maya Stewart, Chickasaw, Creek, and Choctaw Descent
Born 1979, works in Los Angeles
Carmen clutch, 2010
Calfskin
Alano Edzerza, Tahltan
Born 1980, works in West Vancouver, British Columbia
Chilkat tunic, 2013
Cotton
Peabosy Essex Museum, gift of Karen Kramer, 2015.11.2
Edzerza’s tunic draws from the formline style of Northwest Coast indigenous art—particularly its heavy black outlines, oval-like shapes, and U-forms. This design is borrowed from woven ceremonial-dance blankets. Edzerza works in many mediums, from clothing and silver jewelry to painting and glass.

Tommy Joseph, Tlingit Born 1964, works in Sitka, Alaska My Ancestors, 2009-15 Wool and dye On loan from the Fabric Workshop and Museum This piece references Joseph's Tlingit clan group, Ch'aak, or Eagle (Wolf is sometimes used interchangeably). The flattened Eagle figure, rendered in heavy black outlines, wraps around the wearer's body. Joseph collaborated with Philadelphia's Fabric Workshop and Museum to create this experimental three-piece suit. By profession a carver of masks and totem poles, Joseph translates Tlingit stories into three-dimensional art.

Tommy Joseph, Tlingit
Born 1964, works in Sitka, Alaska
My Ancestors, 2009-15
Wool and dye
On loan from the Fabric Workshop and Museum
This piece references Joseph’s Tlingit clan group, Ch’aak, or Eagle (Wolf is sometimes used interchangeably). The flattened Eagle figure, rendered in heavy black outlines, wraps around the wearer’s body. Joseph collaborated with Philadelphia’s Fabric Workshop and Museum to create this experimental three-piece suit. By profession a carver of masks and totem poles, Joseph translates Tlingit stories into three-dimensional art.

Jamie Okuma, Luiseno and Shoshone-Bannock Born 1977, works on La Jolla Indian Reservation, California Boots, 2013-14 Antique glass beads on boots Boots designed by Christian Louboutin (born 1964, France) Peabody Essex Museum, commissioned by the Peabody Essex Museum with support from Katrina Carye, John Curuby, Karen Keane and Dan Elias, Cynthia Gardner, Merry Glosband, and Steve and Ellen Hoffman, 2014.44.1AB

Jamie Okuma, Luiseno and Shoshone-Bannock
Born 1977, works on La Jolla Indian Reservation, California
Boots, 2013-14
Antique glass beads on boots
Boots designed by Christian Louboutin (born 1964, France)
Peabody Essex Museum, commissioned by the Peabody Essex Museum with support from Katrina Carye, John Curuby, Karen Keane and Dan Elias, Cynthia Gardner, Merry Glosband, and Steve and Ellen Hoffman, 2014.44.1AB

Jamie Okuma, Luiseno and Shoshone-Bannock Born 1977, works on La Jolla Indian Reservation, California Jacket, pants, and purse, 2013-14 For J. Okuma Jacket: holographic Italian lambskin Pants: leather and lace Purse: leather, pony hair, dye, and brass

Jamie Okuma, Luiseno and Shoshone-Bannock
Born 1977, works on La Jolla Indian Reservation, California
Jacket, pants, and purse, 2013-14
For J. Okuma
Jacket: holographic Italian lambskin
Pants: leather and lace
Purse: leather, pony hair, dye, and brass

Virgil Ortiz, Cochiti Pueblo Born 1969, works at Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico Scarf, Indigene Collection, 2013 For VO Silk On loan from Madeleine M. Krapa

Virgil Ortiz, Cochiti Pueblo
Born 1969, works at Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico
Scarf, Indigene Collection, 2013
For VO
Silk
On loan from Madeleine M. Krapa
Ortiz’s fashion line features hard-edged looks in leather jackets, luxury handbags, and silk scarves like this one. This scarf depicts Kootz, a character in Evolution, a film script that Ortiz is writing. A futuristic reimagining of the 1680 Pueblo Revolt, it will feature Ortiz’s costumes. Through his art, he hopes to engage Cochiti youth in their own culture and its language, artistic practices, and history.

Marcus Amerman, Choctaw Born 1959, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico Untitled (Lone Ranger and Tonto Bracelet), 2004 Glass beads, leather, thread, rubberized cotton, and brass On loan from the Museum of Arts and Design, Museum purchase with funds provided by the Horace W, Goldsmith Foundation, 2004.27  In the 1980s Amerman created a new genre of beadwork portraiture featuring bold, colorful mashups of history and pop culture.  This cuff is a commentary on the Lone Ranger and Tonoto, characters from the popular  20th-century radio and TV Westerns who embody cultural stereotypes of the white male leader and the faithful Indian servant.  By depicting such characters with humor and irony, Amerman aims to raise awareness of misunderstandings and myths about his Native heritage.

Marcus Amerman, Choctaw
Born 1959, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico
Untitled (Lone Ranger and Tonto Bracelet) [left], 2004
Glass beads, leather, thread, rubberized cotton, and brass
On loan from the Museum of Arts and Design, Museum purchase with funds provided by the Horace W, Goldsmith Foundation, 2004.27
In the 1980s Amerman created a new genre of beadwork portraiture featuring bold, colorful mashups of history and pop culture. This cuff is a commentary on the Lone Ranger and Tonoto, characters from the popular 20th-century radio and TV Westerns who embody cultural stereotypes of the white male leader and the faithful Indian servant. By depicting such characters with humor and irony, Amerman aims to raise awareness of misunderstandings and myths about his Native heritage.

Maria A. Bird, Diné [Navajo], Hopi, and Santa Clara Pueblo Born 1982, works in Arizona American Horse Earrings, 2013 For Mea B'fly Designs Graphic adhered to balsa wood On loan from Karen Kramer

Maria A. Bird, Diné [Navajo], Hopi, and Santa Clara Pueblo
Born 1982, works in Arizona
American Horse Earrings, 2013
For Mea B’fly Designs
Graphic adhered to balsa wood
On loan from Karen Kramer
Dylan Poblano, Zuni Pueblo
Born 1974, works at Zuni Pueblo, New Mexico
Knuckle ring, 1999
Silver and gemstones
On loan from the Museum of Arts and Design, gift of Natalie and Greg Fitz-Gerald, 2008.42.3

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Rico Lanaat' Worl, Tlingit and Athabascan Born 1984, works in Juneau, Alaska Raven and Eagle skateboard decks, 2014 For Trickster Company Wood and paint Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase, 2014.53.1-2

Rico Lanaat’ Worl, Tlingit and Athabascan
Born 1984, works in Juneau, Alaska
Raven and Eagle skateboard decks, 2014
For Trickster Company
Wood and paint
Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase, 2014.53.1-2

Winifred Nungak, Inuit Born 1987, works in Kangirsuk, Nunavik, Quebec Parka and nasaq (hat), 2015 Parka: Commander fabric, Hollofil, and fox fur Nasaq: wool and fox fur

Winifred Nungak, Inuit
Born 1987, works in Kangirsuk, Nunavik, Quebec
Parka and nasaq (hat), 2015
Parka: Commander fabric, Hollofil, and fox fur
Nasaq: wool and fox fur

Lisa Telford, Haida Born 1952 works in Everett, Washington Pochahaida dress, 2009 Red cedar bark, cordage, and faux-leather fringe On loan from the Biil Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art, Burke Museum, 2014-50.3

Lisa Telford, Haida
Born 1952 works in Everett, Washington
Pochahaida dress, 2009
Red cedar bark, cordage, and faux-leather fringe
On loan from the Biil Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art, Burke Museum, 2014-50.3

Margaret Roach Wheller, Chickasaw Born 1943, workd in Joplin, Missouri The Messenger (The Owl) cape and headpiece, Mahotan Collection, 2014 For Mahota Handwovens Cape: silk-wool yarn Headpiece: silk-wool yarn, metal, silver, glass beads, and peacock feathers On loan from Portland Art Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by an anonymous donor This ensemble turns two-dimensional handwoven fabric into a three-dimensional soft sculpture. In the Native worldview of the Southeast, birds figure prominently as warriors, hunters, protectors, and messengers. This ensemble evokes traditional dancers who wear feathers to embody these beings and to summon their powers. Owl, a messenger from the spirit world, often warns people of danger. Wheeler's Mahotan Collection also features Raven, Crane, and Snow Goose, demonstrating the enduring role of birds in Chicksaw art and culture.

Margaret Roach Wheller, Chickasaw
Born 1943, workd in Joplin, Missouri
The Messenger (The Owl) cape and headpiece, Mahotan Collection, 2014
For Mahota Handwovens
Cape: silk-wool yarn
Headpiece: silk-wool yarn, metal, silver, glass beads, and peacock feathers
On loan from Portland Art Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by an anonymous donor
This ensemble turns two-dimensional handwoven fabric into a three-dimensional soft sculpture. In the Native worldview of the Southeast, birds figure prominently as warriors, hunters, protectors, and messengers. This ensemble evokes traditional dancers who wear feathers to embody these beings and to summon their powers. Owl, a messenger from the spirit world, often warns people of danger. Wheeler’s Mahotan Collection also features Raven, Crane, and Snow Goose, demonstrating the enduring role of birds in Chicksaw art and culture.

Kent Monkman, Cree Born 1965, works in Toronto, Ontario Louis Vuitton Quiver, 2007 Leather, printed fabric, and arrows.

Kent Monkman, Cree
Born 1965, works in Toronto, Ontario
Louis Vuitton Quiver, 2007
Leather, printed fabric, and arrows.

Barry Ace, Anishinaabe (Odawa) Born 1958, works in Ottawa, Ontario Reaction shoes, 2005 Leather shoes, computer components, wire, paper, rubber, and metal On loan from John Cook Ace made these modern-day moccasins out of reclaimed computer parts. Clusters of coated copper wire stand in for traditional ground-trailing fringe, originally designed to erase the wearer's tracks. Reaction, the brand name for Ace's shoes, gives the piece its title; it suggests responsiveness, a theme important to Ace's work. He does more than upcycle—he completely reimagines the cast-off remnants of our culture of consumption, turning found objects into art.

Barry Ace, Anishinaabe (Odawa)
Born 1958, works in Ottawa, Ontario
Reaction shoes, 2005
Leather shoes, computer components, wire, paper, rubber, and metal
On loan from John Cook
Ace made these modern-day moccasins out of reclaimed computer parts. Clusters of coated copper wire stand in for traditional ground-trailing fringe, originally designed to erase the wearer’s tracks. Reaction, the brand name for Ace’s shoes, gives the piece its title; it suggests responsiveness, a theme important to Ace’s work. He does more than upcycle—he completely reimagines the cast-off remnants of our culture of consumption, turning found objects into art.

Barry Ace, Anishinaabe (Odawa) Born 1958, works in Ottawa, Ontario Reaction shoes, 2005 Leather shoes, computer components, wire, paper, rubber, and metal On loan from John Cook Ace made these modern-day moccasins out of reclaimed computer parts. Clusters of coated copper wire stand in for traditional ground-trailing fringe, originally designed to erase the wearer's tracks. Reaction, the brand name for Ace's shoes, gives the piece its title; it suggests responsiveness, a theme important to Ace's work. He does more than upcycle—he completely reimagines the cast-off remnants of our culture of consumption, turning found objects into art.

Barry Ace, Anishinaabe (Odawa)
Born 1958, works in Ottawa, Ontario
Reaction shoes [detail], 2005
Leather shoes, computer components, wire, paper, rubber, and metal
On loan from John Cook
Ace made these modern-day moccasins out of reclaimed computer parts. Clusters of coated copper wire stand in for traditional ground-trailing fringe, originally designed to erase the wearer’s tracks. Reaction, the brand name for Ace’s shoes, gives the piece its title; it suggests responsiveness, a theme important to Ace’s work. He does more than upcycle—he completely reimagines the cast-off remnants of our culture of consumption, turning found objects into art.

Wendy Red Star, Apsáalooke (Crow) Born 1981, works in Portland, Oregon and Terrance Houle, Blood Born 1975, works in Calfary, Alberta Sikahpoyii, bishee, baleiittaashtee (Motor Oil, Buffalo, Dress), 2013 Vinyl and plastic beads Dress on loan from Portland Art Museum, museum purchase, funds provided by Barbara Christy Wagner, 2014.19.1a-c. Vinyl silhouettes on loan from Terrance Houle Red Star's dress stands before buffalo silhouettes designed by Houle. Their collaborative piece draws attention to the depletion of natural resources on Native lands—both the environmental destruction and the economic exploitation involved in drilling for oil and gas. The drips of vinyl from Houle's black buffalo suggest both oil and blood, while the long, trailing fringed dress—a traditional garment still worn among the Apsaalooke—and the elaborate breastplate invoke the strength and resilience of Native people.

Wendy Red Star, Apsáalooke (Crow)
Born 1981, works in Portland, Oregon
and Terrance Houle, Blood
Born 1975, works in Calfary, Alberta
Sikahpoyii, bishee, baleiittaashtee (Motor Oil, Buffalo, Dress), 2013
Vinyl and plastic beads
Dress on loan from Portland Art Museum, museum purchase, funds provided by Barbara Christy Wagner, 2014.19.1a-c. Vinyl silhouettes on loan from Terrance Houle
Red Star’s dress stands before buffalo silhouettes designed by Houle. Their collaborative piece draws attention to the depletion of natural resources on Native lands—both the environmental destruction and the economic exploitation involved in drilling for oil and gas. The drips of vinyl from Houle’s black buffalo suggest both oil and blood, while the long, trailing fringed dress—a traditional garment still worn among the Apsaalooke—and the elaborate breastplate invoke the strength and resilience of Native people.

 

Pat Pruitt, Laguna Pueblo Born 1973, works in Paguate, Laguna Pueblo, New Mexico Tahitian Bondage Necklace and earrings, 2008 316L stainless steel and natural Tahitian pearls On loan from Catherine Sullivan-Kropa and William Kropa Pruitt's pearls roll freely yet remain trapped inside clawlike pendants. Compare this work to the familiar turquoise-and-silver jewelry of the Native American Southwest—the difference is radical. Industrial design, fast cars, and tattoos infuse Pruitt's aesthetic, and computer-aided technology drives his jewelry production. Pruitt's use of color is refined—a spectrum of subtly varied grays and blacks.

Pat Pruitt, Laguna Pueblo
Born 1973, works in Paguate, Laguna Pueblo, New Mexico
Tahitian Bondage Necklace and earrings, 2008
316L stainless steel and natural Tahitian pearls
On loan from Catherine Sullivan-Kropa and William Kropa
Pruitt’s pearls roll freely yet remain trapped inside clawlike pendants. Compare this work to the familiar turquoise-and-silver jewelry of the Native American Southwest—the difference is radical. Industrial design, fast cars, and tattoos infuse Pruitt’s aesthetic, and computer-aided technology drives his jewelry production. Pruitt’s use of color is refined—a spectrum of subtly varied grays and blacks.

Pat Pruitt, Laguna Pueblo Born 1973, works in Paguate, Laguna Pueblo, New Mexico Tahitian Bondage Necklace and earrings, 2008 316L stainless steel and natural Tahitian pearls On loan from Catherine Sullivan-Kropa and William Kropa Pruitt's pearls roll freely yet remain trapped inside clawlike pendants. Compare this work to the familiar turquoise-and-silver jewelry of the Native American Southwest—the difference is radical. Industrial design, fast cars, and tattoos infuse Pruitt's aesthetic, and computer-aided technology drives his jewelry production. Pruitt's use of color is refined—a spectrum of subtly varied grays and blacks.

Pat Pruitt, Laguna Pueblo
Born 1973, works in Paguate, Laguna Pueblo, New Mexico
Tahitian Bondage Necklace and earrings, 2008
316L stainless steel and natural Tahitian pearls
On loan from Catherine Sullivan-Kropa and William Kropa
Pruitt’s pearls roll freely yet remain trapped inside clawlike pendants. Compare this work to the familiar turquoise-and-silver jewelry of the Native American Southwest—the difference is radical. Industrial design, fast cars, and tattoos infuse Pruitt’s aesthetic, and computer-aided technology drives his jewelry production. Pruitt’s use of color is refined—a spectrum of subtly varied grays and blacks.

Sho Sho Esquiro, Kaska Dene and Cree Born 1980, works in Vancouver, British Columbia Wile Wile Wile dress, Day of the Dead Collection, 2013 Dress: seal fur, beaver trail, carp, beads, silk, and rooster feathers Fascinator: tulle and skull by Dominique Hanke (United Kingdom) for Sho Sho Esquiro Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by Ellen and Steve Hoffman, 2016.41.1-.2 Runway show, Spring 2014 Collection Sho Sho Esquiro Couture Fashion Week, New York, 2013 Couturefashionweek.com 40 seconds, looped

Sho Sho Esquiro, Kaska Dene and Cree
Born 1980, works in Vancouver, British Columbia
Wile Wile Wile dress, Day of the Dead Collection, 2013
Dress: seal fur, beaver trail, carp, beads, silk, and rooster feathers
Fascinator: tulle and skull by Dominique Hanke (United Kingdom) for Sho Sho Esquiro
Peabody Essex Museum, museum purchase with funds provided by Ellen and Steve Hoffman, 2016.41.1-.2
Runway show, Spring 2014 Collection
Sho Sho Esquiro
Couture Fashion Week, New York, 2013
Couturefashionweek.com
40 seconds, looped

Kristen Dorsey, Chickasaw Born 1985, works in Los Angeles, California Stingray breastplate and ring, Shokmalli' Collection, 2013-14 Sterling silver, stingray leather, larimar, copper, and brass Ring on loan from Sarah Jay This breastplate and ring embody the duality of Sky Serpent, the fearsome yet gentle Chickasaw deity who controls the movement celestial bodies. The delicate wings in this jewelry offset the snake angular lines, creating a sense of sweeping movement.

Kristen Dorsey, Chickasaw
Born 1985, works in Los Angeles, California
Stingray breastplate and ring, Shokmalli’ Collection, 2013-14
Sterling silver, stingray leather, larimar, copper, and brass
Ring on loan from Sarah Jay
This breastplate and ring embody the duality of Sky Serpent, the fearsome yet gentle Chickasaw deity who controls the movement celestial bodies. The delicate wings in this jewelry offset the snake angular lines, creating a sense of sweeping movement.

Nicholas Galanin, Tlingit and Aleut Born 1979, works in Sitka, Alaska Shoes, 2015 Leather and copper

Nicholas Galanin, Tlingit and Aleut
Born 1979, works in Sitka, Alaska
Shoes, 2015
Leather and copper

Carla Hemlock, Mohawk Born 1961, works in Kahnawake Mohawk Territory Treaty Cloth Shirt, 2012 Muslin, cotton cloth, synthetic ribbon, glass beads, quahog clam shell beads (purple wampum), thread, ink On loan from the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian, 269144.000 Hemlock's shirt commemorates the 1794 Treaty of Canandaigua—still in effect—between the U.S. government and the Iroquois Confederacy. A document written in English and a patterned wampum belt, both re-created here, encoded its articles, which require the U.S. government to make a yearly payment of goods to the confederacy, including treaty cloth. Today that cloth consists of pieces of muslin, but originally bolts of calico (highly valuable at the time) were given. This shirt, made from the 2009 treaty cloth, signals two uninterrupted centuries of this annual presentation, a rare example of a treaty consistently upheld between the government and Native people.

Carla Hemlock, Mohawk
Born 1961, works in Kahnawake Mohawk Territory
Treaty Cloth Shirt, 2012
Muslin, cotton cloth, synthetic ribbon, glass beads, quahog clam shell beads (purple wampum), thread, ink
On loan from the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, 269144.000
Hemlock’s shirt commemorates the 1794 Treaty of Canandaigua—still in effect—between the U.S. government and the Iroquois Confederacy. A document written in English and a patterned wampum belt, both re-created here, encoded its articles, which require the U.S. government to make a yearly payment of goods to the confederacy, including treaty cloth. Today that cloth consists of pieces of muslin, but originally bolts of calico (highly valuable at the time) were given. This shirt, made from the 2009 treaty cloth, signals two uninterrupted centuries of this annual presentation, a rare example of a treaty consistently upheld between the government and Native people.

Native Fashion Now, the first large-scale traveling exhibition of contemporary Native American fashion, celebrating indigenous designers from across the United States and Canada, from the 1950s to today arrives at its final destination, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian’s George Gustav Heye Center in New York.

Take the virtual tour of the entire exhibit (above). But, it is worth visiting in person and can be seen at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian’s George Gustav Heye Center in New York from February 17, 2017 to September 4, 2017. The museum is located at One Bowling Green in Lower Manhattan and admission is free.  http://www.nmai.si.edu


About the author: Bill Indursky

Bill Indursky is an architect, trend expert, and digital entrepreneur. He is the former founder of V&M (Vintage & Modern (2006-2013)) and the current founder of Design Life Network (DLN). DLN is a MAGAZINE + DESIGN AGENCY + MARKETPLACE + TV CHANNEL promoting inspiring design of all eras online and on TV.


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