Thursday, November 24, 2016

A step in the right direction for the display of Native American art

By Christopher Green
Jeffrey Gibson, “Come Alive! (I Feel Love)” (2016), acrylic felt, rawhide, wood, glass beads, stone arrowheads, steel wire, assorted beads, tin and copper jingles, artificial sinew, acrylic paint, druzy quartz crystal, steel and brass studs, 66 1/4 x 28 x 15 in, collection of the Newark Museum (photo courtesy of the artist website)
NEW JERSEY---At the Newark Museum, Native American artworks are no longer displayed as mere cultural artifacts of the past. The museum’s impressive collection, formerly housed in a corner of the Main Building and far from the galleries for American, 20th-, and 21st-century art, has been rehung as Native Artists of North America. Enlivened with indigenous voice, its works have been temporally unmoored and allowed to speak across time and space. A newly commissioned sculpture by Jeffrey Gibson (Choctaw/Cherokee) titled “Come Alive! (I Feel Love)” (2016) captures the laudable shift in the display of Native American art and culture at the museum. [link]

Newark Museum: "Native Artists of North America" (On long-term view);  49 Washington Street, Newark, New Jersey; (973)596-6550;
Preston Singletary, “Tlingit Storage Chest” (2015), glass, 24 x 31 x 19 in, purchase 2015 Contemporary Art Society of Great Britain Fund and Mr. and Mrs. William V. Griffin Fund (© Preston Singletary, photo provided by Blue Rain Gallery)