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Contemporary American Indian Art

02/06/14

Contemporary American Indian Art

Contemporary American Indian Art · The Nerman Museum Collection

American Girl by Jeffrey Gibson

Jeffrey Gibson (Cherokee/Choctaw), American Girl, 2013, Found punching bag, wool blanket, glass beads, steel studs, artificial sinew, tin jingles and chain, 43 x 16 x 16", Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, 2013.45, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS, Gift of the H Tony and Marti Oppenheimer Foundation

Fall by Wendy Red Star

Wendy Red Star (Crow), Fall, Four Seasons Series, 2006, Archival pigment print on Museo silver rag on dibond, 35.5 x 37", Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, 2014.06, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS

Wild Woman by Joe Wilson

Joe Wilson (Kwakwaka’wakw), Wild Woman, 2002, Red cedar and horsehair, 21 x 12 x 8.5", Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, 2014.13, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS

Large bowl depicting Cochiti feast dance by Diego Romero

Diego Romero (Cochiti Pueblo), Large bowl depicting Cochiti feast dance gold rim with water and corn design, 2011, Native clay, native clay slips and commercial gold, 15 x 6", Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, 2011.52, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS

The Cover of the Rolling Stone by Jackie Larson Bread

Jackie Larson Bread (Blackfeet), The Cover of the Rolling Stone, 2011, Buckskin, beads, paint and laptop sleeve, 16 x 13 x 1.75", Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, 2013.41, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS

Clamming Bucket by Clinton Work

Clinton Work (Kwakwaka'wakw), Clamming Bucket, 2014, Polyurethane bucket with cedar bark, felt and plastic buttons, 14 x 12 x 12", Collection Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, 2014.11, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Contemporary American Indian Art · The Nerman Museum Collection, opens Friday, Feb. 7, in the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art’s first-floor galleries. A reception for the exhibit will begin at 6 p.m. followed by a lecture with artist Jeffery Gibson at 7 p.m. in the museum’s Hudson Auditorium. Both the reception and the lecture are free and open to the public.

This exhibition celebrates Johnson County Community College’s and the Nerman Museum’s extraordinary, decade-long commitment to building a major collection (numbering130 works by 95 artists) of contemporary American Indian art. It is a commitment which likely exceeds that of any other major American museum of contemporary art.

The 43 artists included in the exhibition embrace a diversity of themes – some political, some historical, others personal – and each addresses these ideas in individually expressive ways: perhaps with directness, poignancy or humor. The collection and exhibit allow insight as to how American Indian artists are reinterpreting or reinventing their cultural traditions through contemporary perspectives and practices.

"These artists share a common heritage of indigenous roots and an epic history of cultural change," states Libby Lumpkin, professor of art history at the University of New Mexico.

American Indian artists are an integral part of contemporary American culture, and while many may work in more traditional media such as pottery, beadwork or weaving, their works are unequivocally informed by the times in which we live. Numerous artists represented in the collection have degrees from universities such as Georgetown University or the University of California in Los Angeles, and they may have chosen to return to reservations or pueblos to explore and reinvigorate traditional art forms passed down through generations. Accordingly, many of the pieces exhibited reflect a utilitarian origin, as expressed in their form or material usage.

The 55 works selected for this exhibit span a diverse range of cultures and geography, extending from the Pacific Northwest to the Southwest, Plains and Northeast. The collection is inclusive of a variety of mediums – clay, beadwork, glass, textiles, sculpture, basketry, painting, photography, etc. – and philosophical approaches. Its intent is to emphasize the importance and continuity of contemporary American Indian art and to do so within the context of a contemporary art museum and a college environment.

It is of note that JCCC is home to the Center for American Indian Studies (CAIS). Established in 2010, CAIS (along with its parent organization, the American Indian Health Research and Education Alliance) partners with American Indian peoples and organizations to improve the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well being of American Indians throughout the United States. The annual Center for American Indian Studies Pow Wow (hosted at JCCC the first Friday and Saturday of May) is currently one of the only health and wellness pow wows in the United States.

Contemporary American Indian Art · The Neman Museum Collection will be on view through May 18, 2014.

The Nerman Museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. The museum is closed on Mondays and all JCCC holidays. Admissions and parking are free.

For more information, call 913-469-3000 or visit www.nermanmuseum.org

Artists included in the exhibition:

Norman Akers
Marcus Amerman
Jackie Larson Bread
Pamela Brown
Richard Chavez
Monty Claw
Todd Defoe
Joe Feddersen
Jason Garcia
Jeffrey Gibson
Pat Courtney Gold
Stan Greene
Linda Haukaas
Thomas “Red Owl” Haukaas
Donald “Babe” Hemlock
Elsie Holiday
Ken Humpherville
George Hunt Jr.
Chris Johnson
Joann Johnson
Tom Jones
Brad Kahlhamer
Douglas Miles
Molly Murphy
Virgil Ortiz
Robert M. Patricio
Norbert Peshlakai
Kevin Pourier
Wendy Red Star
Diego Romero
Marilou Schultz
Helen Shupla
Preston Singletary
Jaune Quick-to-See Smith
Martha Smith
Star Wallowing Bull
Jessie Webster
Shyatesa White Dove
Dwayne Wilcox
Kenneth Williams
Joe Wilson
Wilmer "Duffy" Wilson
Clinton Work