The Minneapolis Institute of Art, MIA, is showing a ground breaking exhibit of Native women artists work from a multi-generational perspective. The art and culture of Native peoples have been shared through the generations of women. Many have not had the recognition that they deserved. This exhibit is giving voice to Native women artists. This exhibit will travel nationally and give voice to Native women's art.
Detail of "Childhood," Lou-Ann Neel
This photo mosaic by Lou-Ann Neel of 3000 images of Native children forced into boarding schools to become assimilated into White Culture in the 20th Century. The children were not recorded by name. Lou-Ann was one of those children. Her images "represent the dispossessed. Generation after generation lined up, row after row, mimicking the same impersonal blue print of the residential school building and each dorm room." Minnesota Women's Press by Mikki Morrissette
The image that she, Neel, created was a image of her nephew, Daniel in full regalia for his naming ceremony when he was a young boy. She wants Native children to know that they are loved and they belong and are acknowledged in their families and their culture.
Remember the sky that you were born under,
know each of the star's stories.
Remember the moon, know who she is.
Remember the sun's birth at dawn, that is the
strongest point of time. Remember sundown
and the giving away of night.
Remember your birth, how your mother struggled
to give you form and breath. You are evidence of
her life, and her mother's and hers.
Remember you father. He is your life, also.
Remember the earth whose skin you are:
red earth, black earth, yellow earth, white earth
brown earth, we are earth.
Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have their
tribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,
listen to them. They are alive poems.
Remember the wind. Remember her voice. She knows the
origin of this universe.
Remember you are all people and all people
Remember you are this universe and this
universe is you.
Remember all is in motion, is growing, is you.
Remember language come from this.
Remember the dance language is, that life is.
Joy Harjo, (Muscogee/Cherokee, b. 1951)
This powerful and beautiful exhibit, "Heart's of Our People," is at the MIA through Sunday, August 18, 2019.