Nomads of the Plains
The exhibit seeks an historical perspective. It shows that the prototypical Plains Indians were recent immigrants from the upper Mississippi who adopted a nomadic buffalo-hunting lifestyle made possible by the introduction of the horse. Most historic artifacts date to reservation days when Indian cultures were undergoing cataclysmic change. The exhibit features historic Native American clothing, ornaments, and painted muslin principally from the Lakota Sioux, but also from the Cheyenne, Arapaho, and Blackfeet. Modern beadwork, quilts, and painting reveal that the traditional arts continue into the 1980s, continually changing. Exhibit partially funded by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Woods Foundation.
A sampling of ethnographic objects from Africa demonstrates that there is not a single African heritage, but many. The exhibit includes sculpture, clothing, jewelry, musical instruments, and weapons from the Masai, Yoruba, Senufo, and others. Photographs from the Luella Buros and William Fager collections reveal the differences among the various tribes as well as the way some of the objects in the exhibit are worn or used.
Magic in Clay
Contemporary and historic Southwestern pottery from Santa Clara, San Ildefonso, Acoma, Cochiti, and other pueblos, supplemented by Hopi kachinas and Navajo rugs. The exhibit includes historic works by Maria Martinez and Sarafina Tafoya as well as recent works by Lucy Yearflower, Gregory Lone Wolf, Robert Tenorio, Lonnie Vigil, and others. The exhibit features miniatures from the collection of Norman and Bernice Harris.