Above: Andrea Carlson's Anti-Retro. Photographs courtesy of Highpoint and the artist.
In Julie Buffalohead’s Revisionist History, a fox lolls on its back, dallying with a constellation of shadow puppets. There’s the continent of North America, a rabbit, a turtle, and La Pinta, one of the ships that sailed Columbus’s “ocean blue.” It’s a tongue-in-cheek lithograph, with fine lines and delicate washes, showing a greater hand—or paw—playing with history.
Dyani Whitehawk’s screen print from the series Take Care of Them alternately pictures Plains dresses abstracted into shapes and blocks of brilliant color, each suggesting a deep reverence for Lakota women.
Buffalohead (Ponca) and Whitehawk (Siángu Lakota) are among nine indigenous women from tribes all across the U.S. whose work goes on view this month in Indelible Ink: Native Women, Printmaking, Collaboration, an exhibition that features lithography, screen printing, monoprinting, letterpress, and photogravure at the UNM Art Museum’s Raymond Jonson Gallery.
They’re joined by such greats as Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (Salish and Koontenai), who not only paved the way for Native women artists, but whose creative practice served as a touchstone for the show. There are “more hard-hitting statements that can be found in Jaune’s work,” says Mary Statzer, the museum’s curator of prints and photography. Her lithographs are visually alluring in their nod to pop culture, even while they address the loss of traditional Native foodways.
Above: Julie Buffalohead's Revisionist History.
Statzer was so inspired by last summer’s blockbuster exhibition Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists, held at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, that she began to reflect on how the museum might dig into its own collection, especially the Tamarind Institute’s archives. Eventually she zeroed in on Tamarind and five other print studios in the U.S. that have collaborated with Native women artists. The result is an exhibition that mingles incisive criticisms of colonialism with explorations of culture and community.
Indelible Ink opens February 7 and continues through May 8.
Artist Teri Greeves and Jill Ahlberg Yohe, a curator at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, talk about their work on Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists on April 2 at 6 p.m., at the UNM Art Museum.