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Did you know that the Denver Art Museum (DAM) has a robust collection of historical Native arts from Southern New England? This realization inspired Dr. Denene De Quintal's research, which focuses on how these objects came into the collection.
Join us for a talk that will discuss how the presence and history of DAM’s collection highlights a crucial issue that impacts contemporary Indigenous artists from Southern New England: “Native vanishing.”
Native vanishing is a widespread sense that certain Indigenous cultures have disappeared from this and other areas. In Southern New England five tribes have received federal recognition in the past 40 years. Tribes in this region often have intertwined histories with people of African descent and other communities.
Many of their citizens may not look stereotypically “Native,” while the descendants of past citizens may not have tribal affiliation. For these reasons, some Indigenous artists are excluded from gallery, museum, and art fair spaces over their seeming lack of “Native” status.
Using a number of Southern New England baskets to illustrate points, this talk will consider how historical objects can shed light on issues affecting contemporary Indigenous artists. We will explore the challenges contemporary artists face when engaging with (partially racialized) museum narratives that state their tribes have disappeared, as well as the issues that have arisen from the Indian Arts and Crafts Act, which legislates Native American identity and artwork for authenticity.
Doors open at 5:40 pm. A small dessert reception starting at 6 pm will be followed by the lecture at 7 pm.
Denene De Quintal, Ph.D. is the Andrew W. Mellon Post-Doctoral Curatorial Fellow in American Indian Art. She assisted with the exhibition, Stampede: Animals in Art, and is co-curating the upcoming Eyes On: Julie Buffalohead (opening July 2018). Dr. De Quintal is also working on a research project focusing on the Indian Arts and Crafts Act and Native American artists in Southern New England.
She received her B.A. in anthropology from Cornell University, and her M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Chicago in Cultural Anthropology.
Sponsored by Friends of Native Arts: The Douglas Society.