Selected Past Exhibits

Click here to view Current Exhibits.


Exhibits closed in 2014
Exhibits closed in 2013
Exhibits closed in 2011-2012
Exhibits closed in 2009-2010
Exhibits closed in 2008 and earlier

2016

Parks, People, Preservation: Celebrating the National Park Serivce in the Southwest
June 23, 2016 - November 18, 2016

Parks, People, Preservation: Celebrating the National Park Serivce in the Southwest

The National Parks, Monuments and Historic Sites in the Southwest are places that provide us with the opportunity to form a deeper connection to the land, the people and the past that anchors us all as Americans. There’s simply no better getaway in the United States than a visit to one of our many national parks.

There are 13 national parks and 37 monuments and historic sites and parks in the Four Corners states of Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico. Several are represented in this exhibition through historic and contemporary photographs and objects from the collections. Please join us as we celebrate the National Park Service’s centennial anniversary!

Writer and environmentalist, Wallace Stegner, once stated that the “National parks are the best idea we ever had. Absolutely American, absolutely democratic, they reflect us at our best rather than our worst.” Marking the Sparrow’s Fall: The Making of the American West. (1983)

 

Time Exposures: Picturing a History of Isleta Pueblo in the 19th Century
October 22, 2015 - November 18, 2016

Picturing a History of Isleta Pueblo in the 19th Century

The exhibit recounts the story told by the people of the Isleta Pueblo, a Native American community in New Mexico, of when the arrival of American soldiers and explorers in the mid-1800s changed their world dramatically. Divided into three parts, the exhibit describes the traditional year where the community lived by the seasons, with regular sequences of ceremonies and rituals and practices of hunting, gathering and farming. The second section sees the arrival of the Americans and describes how this influx disrupted their ways of living, altered by the taking of lands and other resources. The Isleta people fought these changes but eventually came to terms, in their own ways, with becoming members of America. The third section of the exhibit examines the hundreds of historical photographs displayed, asking what kind of record these photos represent, and how this kind of documentation is a product of “white culture”. Established in the 1300’s, Isleta Pueblo remains a traditional society today, in many ways a people living in two worlds.

The photographs on display came from a number of archival collections throughout the United States, and now reside in the Isleta Tribal Archive. The project began with two lengthy land disputes, which required extensive research by elders and their consultants, uncovering a large collection of oral histories, photos and other records. The committee of traditional leaders wanted to tell the history of their people from their point of view and make it available to the Pueblo and the wider world, while importantly keeping traditions private as to not reveal and diminish integral practices and beliefs.

 

Southwest Landscapes: Views through the Veil

June 10, 2015 - extended through fall 2016

Views through the Veil

Southwest Landscapes: Views through the Veil in the Delaney Library features the work of Hesperus artist Holly Hagan. Hagan’s work is directly inspired by the time she spends exploring the Southwest, and she incorporates archetypal themes into her paintings depicting the natural landscape. In describing her work, the artist states:

"My art is about the mystery of life experienced through elements of nature. It’s about the times when the veil between here and there feels a little thinner. Using glazes and working from memory of personal experiences, I combine the natural world with the mystical elements of the unconscious. We’ve all had the experience of the epiphany- the 'ahaa' moment too big for words. My hope is to capture something in my painting that can’t adequately be expressed by language. I want the viewer to be drawn to the work because it makes them feel something."

Hagan graduated magna cum laude from the University of Oregon with a degree in Fine Art. She has lived in the Durango area since 1997. Hagan is inspired by the natural landscape, and - when not painting - can be found exploring the mountains and canyon country surrounding her home.


This is the second annual Delaney Library exhibit of a regional artist whose work supports the mission of the Center of Southwest Studies.

 

Thunder in Our Voices
January 21, 2016 - May 27, 2016

Thumder in our Voices

The contentious issue of oil and gas pipelines across indigenous lands is the subject of the latest exhibition at the Center of Southwest Studies.

Forty years ago, after the discovery of oil at Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, thirty of the largest oil companies in the world proposed to ship the natural gas across northern Canada, down the valley of the Mackenzie River, and then to Chicago. It was, at the time, the largest engineering project ever proposed in North America. But the Dene and Inuvialuit of northern Canada opposed the project, demanding that their land claims be settled before any construction began. To resolve the impasse, the Canadian government asked Justice Thomas Berger to conduct hearings to decide where and when the pipeline should be built. 

Justice Berger held hearings with the industry, but he also visited thirty Dene and Inuvialuit villages, where young and old were invited to speak. Their voices, carried south by the media, created a well-spring of support for the indigenous communities. The pipeline was never constructed.

Seven years ago, Durango photographer Linda MacCannell was invited to travel on a 1,000-mile journey to revisit those villages with a team of lawyers and journalists who had been involved in the original Inquiry. The goal was to hold an event in each community so residents could hear the speeches that their grandparents had made to Judge Berger. 

MacCannell also gave photography classes so students could record their experiences talking with the elders. "This work is a conversation across generations," she says. "The journey relied on community support and people's willingness to share their stories. These gifts, and more than my quote of luck, made the journey unforgettable."

Thunder in our Voices has toured twenty five Dene and Inuvialuit communities and ten universities across Canada. The Center for Southwest Studies is its first stop in the United States.
Photo credit: Linda MacCannell

 

2015

RARE II: Imperiled Plants of Colorado

May 16 - December 16, 2015

Imperiled Plants of Colorado

RARE II: Imperiled Plants of Colorado, is the second exhibit of the Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists to come to the Museum at the Center of Southwest Studies at Fort Lewis College. The forty botanical illustrations were selected from the hundred and twenty one globally imperiled plants on the Colorado Master Plant List developed by the Colorado Natural Heritage Program. The exhibit is designed to introduce the public to the most imperiled plants in Colorado and educate them on the importance of protecting them. The illustrations are scientifically accurate and exquisitely detailed.

 

Colorado supports a rich and diverse native flora that ranges from shortgrass prairie to alpine tundra. Native plants are key components of the state’s natural heritage and vital to ecosystem functions that result in a healthy, productive and sustainable environment. A small percentage of Colorado’s native plants are considered quite rare, some endemic only to our state. As Colorado’s population and associated infrastructure continues to grow, these vulnerable species are increasingly at risk.

 

The San Juan Mountains Association is a co-sponsor of the exhibit. More information about their commitment to education and stewardship of southwest Colorado’s public lands can be found at www.sjma.org

 
 

Tough Men in Hard Places: The Electrification of Colorado's Western Slope

February 12 - September 18, 2015

The Electrification of Colorado's Western Slope

Based on the book of the same name, the Tough Men in Hard Places exhibit displays the remarkable era of innovation in bringing electrical power to the mines, ranches, and homes of Southwest Colorado beginning in the 1890s, and documents the men who braved wild electrical storms, avalanches, rugged mountain terrain, and extreme weather at the turn of the last century in these selected historic photographs. Tough Men in Hard Places speaks to the tenacity, vision, imagination, and toughness of electrical workers everywhere, past and present.

 

The photographs are part of the Western Colorado Power Company Collection (CSWS P009 & P001), archived in the Center of Southwest Studies’ Delaney Southwest Research Library and Archives, which holds over 8,000 images from the company’s former archives. Most of the photographs in the collection were taken by Philip “P. C.” Schools, Chief Engineer of the Western Colorado Power Company, documenting every step of the “new” power process and the coming of electricity to Southwest Colorado.

 

The book, TOUGH MEN IN HARD PLACES: A Photographic Collection, was researched and written by Esther Greenfield, a long-time volunteer at the Center of Southwest Studies, where she processes old records and photographs, organizing them so that researchers will have ready access. In fact, it was her three-year-long project to help organize the Western Colorado Power Company Collection that led directly to the book. The new exhibit beautifully displays selected images in a large-format scale, accompanied by artifacts of the era.

For more information on the publication, visit Facebook: ToughMeninHardPlaces or www.EstherGreenfield.com.

Masterpieces of the Durango Collection®:
Native Blankets from the Early American Southwest

October 9, 2014 - Summer 2015

 Native Blankets from the Early American Southwest

After a yearlong run at the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian in Santa Fe, NM, these significant textiles return to the Center as the hallmark exhibition honoring the Center’s fiftieth anniversary year. The majority of these Navajo and Puebloan textiles were made between 1860 and 1880, during a time that the American Southwest experienced significant change including the coming of the railroad, and the more readily available exchange of commerce, culture and ideas. 

Indigenous peoples of the Southwest have practiced weaving for approximately 2,500 years. But it was the cultivation of cotton that figures prominently in the production of early southwestern textiles. By 1100, people living in what is now the Four Corners area were weaving on upright looms, producing large, rectangular textiles which could be used as blankets or garments. The Spanish introduced sheep in 1598, and Native weavers quickly adapted to the use of wool.

 

 

nomad bahané: photographs of the Trek

by Venaya Yazzie (dine'/ hopi) in the Delaney Library
June 19, 2014 - May 2015

Street signs photo

nomad bahané: photographs of the Trek by Venaya Yazzie, concerns the 21st century migration of a Navajo/Hopi woman’s nomad story. As an artist, Yazzie travels within the borders of many American Indian reservations in New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Colorado. Her images tell a visual story of her gaze at the natural environment, her Indigenous people and their ancient cultural adornment practices.

The exhibit at the Delaney Southwest Research Library was the inaugural exhibition of a series, which rotates annually and feature a regional artist whose works reflect the landscape, people and heritage of the Southwest.

 

 

 

 

Beauty and Necessity: Rio Grande Textiles from the Durango Collection®

Rio Grande textile from the Durango Collection
Exhibit Dates: April 10, 2014 - May 1, 2015

 

 

 

A public reception for this exhibit featured the gypsy-jazz of The Durangotones. Textile expert and Toadlena Trading Post owner, Mark Winter, then followed with a gallery talk on Rio Grande blankets.

Textiles and other crafts produced by settlers in colonial New Mexico had their origins in Spain, but quickly developed into unique local styles influenced by new needs, available materials, and exposure to the traditions of local Native communities. This blending of materials, techniques, and styles in textile production in Spanish households created a unique new industry known today as the “Rio Grande” textile tradition.

For the early Spanish settlers, prized possessions were the legacy items brought, handed down, or imported from Mexico or Spain. However, as communities became established, their descendants began to create and appreciate their own regional forms of expression, creating items of beauty as well as of necessity.Read more about the exhibit in the Durango Herald's article - click here.

This exhibit was a continuation of programming surrounding the 50th Anniversary year for the Center of Southwest Studies, celebrating half a century of scholarship, service and preservation of the greater Southwest.

 

 

 

 

Mountain Lion!

Exhibit at the Swaner EcoCenter in Park city, UT

Mountain Lion exhibit
December 2014 - March 31, 2015

 

 

 

The Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter and the Quinney College of Natural Resources of Utah State University hosted the Center of Southwest Studies’ traveling exhibit,  Mountain Lions! The Story of Pumas and People.

 

Mountain Lion! was produced by the Center of Southwest Studies at Fort Lewis College, with help from the Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife and the Southern Ute Tribe. The exhibit features a variety of perspectives on the West’s most elusive predator. After its premier exhibition at the Center of Southwest Studies, Mountain Lion! has traveled for exhibit to the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff and the Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores, Colorado.

 

 

 

2014

One Bead at a Time: The Artistry of Orlando Dugi and Ken Williams

The Artistry of Orlando Dugi and Ken Williams

Exhibit Dates: June 21 - December 17, 2014

One Bead at a Time featured the work of two contemporary Santa Fe artists, focusing on beadwork and fashion design. Orlando Dugi (Navajo) designs and makes hand-beaded eveningwear and accessories. He works by stitching one bead at a time, working with fine silks, leathers, feathers and metals. One of his gowns recently appeared in Vogue Italia. Ken Williams (Arapaho/ Seneca) blends his modern style of beadwork with his traditional upbringing. His primary focus is fancy bags- handbags, shoulder pouches, pipe bags and delicate pictorial purses. Williams recently won 2014 Best of Show at the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market.

 

 

Native Views, Native Visions

Native Views, Native Visions gallery display
Exhibit Dates: October 24, 2013 - Aug 1, 2014

 

 

Native Views, Native Visions was an exhibit of contemporary artwork by Native American artists, with key pieces highlighted from the Center's permanent collections.

Many of the pieces in the show were donated by Bill and Sue Hensler, with others coming from the collection of Ken and Nancy Goodhue-McWilliams. The exhibit includes pieces from other individuals who hold Fort Lewis College and its commitment to Native American education in high regard, and have chosen the Center of Southwest Studies as the new home for their collections. Several notable new acquisitions on display include works by Pablita Velarde, her daughter Helen Hardin, and granddaughter Margerite Bagshaw.

The exhibit featured paintings, drawings, and prints, complemented by selected works in other media. The exhibit celebrates the diverse artistic and cultural perspectives of Native artists by focusing on artists' individual portrayals of the natural and spiritual world. The selections go beyond the art of the Southwest to honor Fort Lewis College's Sacred Trust, which extends to many Native peoples, and to generate appreciation and dialogue for the viewer. Fort Lewis College students took a leadership role in selecting the art and producing the exhibit.

 

Woven to Wear

Woven to Wear exhibit
Exhibit Dates: Feb 7, 2013 - May 2014

Woven to Wear featured key textiles from The Durango Collection®. Representing 800 years of weaving in the Southwest, The Durango Collection ® forms the cornerstone of the collections at the Center of Southwest Studies, chronicling the remarkable achievement of Puebloan, Navajo and Hispanic weavers. This exhibition highlighted Navajo and Puebloan wearing blankets and clothing, paying homage to the creativity and skill of these weavers. Navajo textile design reflects the Diné concept of harmony, while Puebloan textile design expresses identity.

 

 

 

 

Treasures unveiled

cowboy art work
Exhibit Dates: June 17, 2010 - Feb 21, 2014

 

 

 

Treasures Unveiled is an exhibit of unique and rarely seen items from the Center’s collections. This exhibit will "explore for treasure" in a number of ways.The word treasure can have many meanings. The Southwest holds national treasures, such as Canyonlands and Mesa Verde National Parks. People, too, are treasures. Artists like Stanton Englehart and R.C. Gorman are venerated for the beauty they create. Some treasures have more personal meaning: a family possession that survived the journey west, or perhaps a wedding photograph or an heirloom quilt. Some treasures are less tangible, such as a thoughtful word or stories of a different way of life.The Center of Southwest Studies invites you to joins us in a Southwestern treasure hunt!

2013




Frontier Blues: The Legacy of Fort Lewis College
Old Fort Lewis

Exhibit Dates: Mar 18, 2011 - July 2013

In celebration of 100 years as an outstanding educational institution, Fort Lewis College and the Center of Southwest Studies have opened a new major exhibit honoring the remarkable heritage of the College. In three parts, the exhibit focuses on distinct chapters of Fort Lewis history: the military fort period (1878 - 1891); the Fort Lewis Indian School (1891 - 1911); and Fort Lewis A&M (1911 - 1956).

2011-2012

Ancient Skywatchers of the Southwest:
A Photography Exhibit by John Ninnemann

Phases of the moon
Exhibit Dates: Feb 9 - Oct 31, 2012

The Ancestral Puebloan people on the Colorado Plateau were sky watchers with a sophisticated knowledge of solar and lunar events. This collection of photographs exhibits the sun, moon and shadows in significant alignments occurring only on specific dates. John Ninnemann is a photographer, scientist and Fort Lewis College Dean Emeritus.
 

Fiber Celebrated 2011


Fiber display
Exhibit Dates: July 21 - Sept 24, 2011

Fiber Celebrated 2011 is an exhibition of handwoven or handmade fiber forms that are one-of-a-kind, including functional household items, functional wearable items and 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional work emphasizing decorative, expressive or sculptural ideas. The juried exhibition is organized by the Intermountain Weavers Conference. This year's juror is Juanita Girardin, who owns a fiber studio in Velarde, New Mexico.


 

The Real Savages
Exhibit Dates: Mar 18 - July 2011

This exhibit presents a viewpoint of how propaganda and American stereotypes have influenced and impacted Native American cultures and identities. Juxtaposing stereotypical, visual images with historical facts, this exhibit explores the experience of culture assimilation, identity and knowledge.

The Real Savages began as a Fort Lewis College student independent study project by graphic design major, Babe Lansing, who is Ute Mountain Ute. The project was inspired after a summer semester in Germany studying propaganda in art. Art professor Paul Booth facilitated both the summer semester, and Lansing’s project. What resulted from dedicated research and creativity was a student exhibition that was first displayed in the Fort Lewis College Art Department and is now featured in the Center's main gallery. "My ideas and motives have come from a variety of sources and influences within my own life and culture. I am pleased to see that the overall final product has exceeded by far what I expected when I first started this project," says Lansing.

 

Wish You Were Here...
Selections from the Nina Heald Webber
Southwest Colorado Postcard Collection


Deep snow on main street Durango, CO
Exhibit Dates: Oct 4, 2008 - Feb 2011

This collection is a visual documentation of the events, places, and people of Durango and the greater Four Corners region.

Postcards sent to loved ones are as popular today as they were over 100 years ago. With brief greetings, postcards tell of travels, adventures or good news. Today they provide us with glimpses of turn-of-the-century Southwestern communities, historic events, people and towns.


 

Mountain Lion
Exhibit Dates: Aug 22, 2009 - Jan 22, 2011

The exhibit was developed by the Center of Southwest Studies and the Colorado Division of Wildlife to address the pressing need for greater public awareness on the growing issue of human encounters with mountain lions. Over the last two decades, there has been a dramatic rise in cougar sightings and dangerous encounters on the urban fringes of numerous Western cities. In a few rare cases, there have been fatalities.

The goal of this exhibit is to create an understanding of the nature of these predators and their long, historic relation with people. The exhibit blends science, history and art to provide a comprehensive look at this mysterious predator. Mountain Lion! examines the history of cougars starting from the Ice Age when they roamed the continent along with fierce cats like the giant North American cave lion and Smilodon, popularly known as the saber-tooth tiger. Another exhibit section will look at the hunting techniques, habits, and physical features of modern mountain lions that have allowed them to survive for thousands of years. Mountain Lion! illustrates the different perspectives of Native Americans and early European settlers toward cougars, how opinions about the animal changed, and the ways they continue to be portrayed in fine art and popular culture. Other sections teach visitors how to read cougar behavior, recognize tracks and scat, and offer practical tips on what to do if you encounter a mountain lion. You’ll also get the chance to hear the sounds of cougars.

Is your institution interested in exhibiting Mountain Lion!? Please download the exhibit prospectus and contact Jay Harrison, Director, for further details.

2009-2010



Rare Imperiled Plants of Colorado

Exhibition Dates: Oct 10, 2009 - May 31, 2010

Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists (RMSBA) has organized a juried, traveling exhibit of 40 rare plants of Colorado. The exhibit is designed to introduce the public to the most imperiled plants in Colorado and educate them to the importance of protecting these plants. It also seeks to illustrate the usefulness that contemporary botanical art plays in ecological education and preservation today. The illustrated plants were selected from the Colorado Rare Plant Master List. The RMSBA will work with the Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Initiative to promote rare plant education at each showing. The exhibit debuted at Denver Botanic Gardens in March of 2009 and will continue on to the Steamboat Art Museum in Steamboat Springs and the Business of Art Center in Manitou Springs after its stay at the Center of Southwest Studies.

Woven to Wear: Navajo and Hopi Textiles from The Durango Collection®


Weaving textiles

Exhibition Dates: September 17, 2009 - January 22, 2010 at the Avenir Museum of Design & Merchandising

Representing 800 years of weaving in the Southwest, The Durango Collection® forms the cornerstone of the Center of Southwest Studies, chronicling the remarkable achievement of Pueblo and Navajo weavers. This exhibition of a portion of the collection pays homage to the creativity and skill of Navajo and Hopi weavers. Mantas of the Hopi parallel the introduction of cotton to the Southwest. And Navajo textiles reflect the Dine (the Navajo name for "the People") concept of harmony.

Fiber Celebrated 2009


Fiber art

Exhibition Dates: July 31 - Sept 18, 2009

Fiber Celebrated 2009 is an exhibition of handwoven or handmade fiber forms that are one-of-a-kind, including functional household items, functional wearable items and 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional work emphasizing decorative, expressive or sculptural ideas. The juried exhibition is organized by the Intermountain Weavers Conference.

Birgitta Logo
The fine art of revolutionary crochet

Exhibition Dates: Feb 8 - Aug 2, 2009

Featuring the work of internationally recognized fiber artist & costume designer Birgitta Bjerke spanning 1964 - 2008.

The work of 100% Birgitta has a story to share. It tells of her personal history and changing times by looping together family, friendships, loves, and the cultural attitudes of the places she lived and worked.

Birgitta’s work spans several decades and illustrates social and political attitudes of the 1960s through the 1980s. Her key work includes clothing and fashion design, graphic illustration and drawing. Her work can be wild and revolutionary, or precise and practiced, but it is always 100% Birgitta.

Transitions: Navajo Weaving, 1880 - 1920


Navajo Weaving

Exhibition Dates: June 22, 2008 - Aug 2, 2009

This exhibition features a selection of transitional Navajo weavings from the renowned Durango Collection®.

Navajo weaving is admired for its beauty, innovative designs and the endurance of the art form. However, although historic weavings sell on today’s art market for thousands of dollars and acclaimed weavers name their price for award winning pieces, many weavers have struggled to make a living from this time consuming art form. Hours are spent in the weaving process, and also in procuring and preparing the woolen yarns. Unfortunately, the dollar return in exchange for the time or money required to prepare or procure materials and complete an intricate weaving has often been extremely low, even for the finest weavings. Navajo weaving is often misinterpreted as a part-time endeavor for weavers, between tending to chores and children. In fact, often times, and especially during the 1880s to 1920s, weaving was a major contributor to the Navajo economy, and at times surpassed all other industries. Even today, weavers may support entire families through weaving.

Images of the Southwest


Images of the southwest
6th Annual Juried Photography Show
Exhibition Dates: Jan 25 - Mar 27, 2009

The annual photography show was juried this year by David West of David J. West Gallery in Springdale, Utah.

2009-2010

Rare
Exhibit Dates: Oct 10, 2009 - May 31, 2010


Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists (RMSBA) has organized a juried, traveling exhibit of 40 rare plants of Colorado. The exhibit is designed to introduce the public to the most imperiled plants in Colorado and educate them to the importance of protecting these plants. It also seeks to illustrate the usefulness that contemporary botanical art plays in ecological education and preservation today. The illustrated plants were selected from the Colorado Rare Plant Master List. The RMSBA will work with the Colorado Rare Plant Conservation Initiative to promote rare plant education at each showing. The exhibit debuted at Denver Botanic Gardens in March of 2009 and will continue on to the Steamboat Art Museum in Steamboat Springs and the Business of Art Center in Manitou Springs after its stay at the Center of Southwest Studies.

Woven to Wear
Navajo and Hopi Textiles from The Durango Collection®


Woven to Wear
Exhibit Dates: September 17, 2009 - January 22, 2010
at the Avenir Museum of Design & Merchandising


Representing 800 years of weaving in the Southwest, The Durango Collection® forms the cornerstone of the Center of Southwest Studies, chronicling the remarkable achievement of Pueblo and Navajo weavers. This exhibition of a portion of the collection pays homage to the creativity and skill of Navajo and Hopi weavers. Mantas of the Hopi parallel the introduction of cotton to the Southwest. And Navajo textiles reflect the Dine (the Navajo name for "the People") concept of harmony.

Fiber Celebrated 2009


Weavers
Exhibit Dates: July 31 - Sept 18, 2009


Fiber Celebrated 2009 is an exhibition of handwoven or handmade fiber forms that are one-of-a-kind, including functional household items, functional wearable items and 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional work emphasizing decorative, expressive or sculptural ideas. The juried exhibition is organized by the Intermountain Weavers Conference.

Birgitta Logo
Birgitta Postcard
Exhibit Dates: Feb 8 - Aug 2, 2009


Featuring the work of internationally recognized fiber artist & costume designer Birgitta Bjerke spanning 1964 - 2008.

The work of 100% Birgitta has a story to share. It tells of her personal history and changing times by looping together family, friendships, loves, and the cultural attitudes of the places she lived and worked.

Birgitta’s work spans several decades and illustrates social and political attitudes of the 1960s through the 1980s. Her key work includes clothing and fashion design, graphic illustration and drawing. Her work can be wild and revolutionary, or precise and practiced, but it is always 100% Birgitta.

Transitions: Navajo Weaving, 1880 - 1920


Navajo Weaving
Exhibit Dates: June 22, 2008 - Aug 2, 2009


This exhibition features a selection of transitional Navajo weavings from the renowned The Durango Collection®.

Navajo weaving is admired for its beauty, innovative designs and the endurance of the art form. However, although historic weavings sell on today’s art market for thousands of dollars and acclaimed weavers name their price for award winning pieces, many weavers have struggled to make a living from this time consuming art form. Hours are spent in the weaving process, and also in procuring and preparing the woolen yarns. Unfortunately, the dollar return in exchange for the time or money required to prepare or procure materials and complete an intricate weaving has often been extremely low, even for the finest weavings. Navajo weaving is often misinterpreted as a part-time endeavor for weavers, between tending to chores and children. In fact, often times, and especially during the 1880s to 1920s, weaving was a major contributor to the Navajo economy, and at times surpassed all other industries. Even today, weavers may support entire families through weaving.

Images of the Southwest
6th Annual Juried Photography Show


Juried Photography Show
Exhibit Dates: Jan 25 - Mar 27, 2009

Our annual photography show was juried this year by David West of David J. West Gallery in Springdale, Utah.

2008-Earlier

 

Connections: Earth + Artist
A Tribute Art Show in Resistance to Desert Rock


Tribute Art Show in Resistance to Desert Rock
Exhibition Dates: June 22 - Sept 28, 2008


In December 2006, the Elders, with the help of Elouise Brown, set up a grassroots resistance camp called Doodá Desert Rock in opposition to the third coal-fired power plant to be established in the Four Corners region. Translated simply, this says "No Desert Rock." The camp sits on a desert mesa near the location proposed for the power plant. To the passing traveler, the area looks desolate and dry, yet it holds many natural underground springs, and traditional sacred sites for prayer and ceremonies.

Curated by Venaya Yazzie, this juried exhibition featured work that unites artists with the community in resistance to Desert Rock. To read the entire exhibition statement, click here.

The Old Spanish Trail: Conduit for Change


The Old Spanish Trail Map
Exhibition Dates: Jan 27 - May 15, 2008


The Old Spanish Trail was primarily a horse and burro pack route linking Santa Fe to Los Angeles. The trail evolved from a network of Indian and Hispanic trade thoroughfares criss-crossing the modern states of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada and California.

Forged by Hispanic traders in 1829 as a trade corridor, the Old Spanish Trail was the first successful Euro-American effort to connect the Mexican frontier provinces of New Mexico and California. The overland trail linked the burgeoning ranch economy of the Pacific communities to the pastoral villages of the intermountain southwest. Ultimately, the Old Spanish Trail became a crucial part of the commercial triangle comprising the Santa Fe Trail in the east and Mexico’s Camino real in the south.

Although the trail was neither "Spanish" nor "old" when western pathfinder, John C. Frèmont, coined the term in his now famous report of 1845, Anglo-Americans popularized the name. To Hispanos the trail was known variously as "el Camino de Nuevo Mexico" or "el Camino de California."

After being exhibited at the Center, the exhibition traveled to the Palace of the Governors in Santa Fe, New Mexico and to the Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores, Colorado.

The Jewelry of Ben Nighthorse


The Jewelry of Ben Nighthorse
Exhibition Dates: Jan 21 - Oct 28, 2007


In the late 1950s, when Ben Nighthorse's jewelry career began, Indian jewelry was defined by Southwest Indian jewelry styles and was created with the region's trademark materials, silver and turquoise. In the 1970s, the Madison Avenue fashion industry popularized Indian jewelry. Artists such as as Ben followed this new trend and focused their talents on jewelry making. The growing Indian jewelry market encouraged artists to experiment with innovative forms and styles and to exchange design ideas. Ben's early work shows the the range of techniques and designs explored by Indian jewelers during this pivotal era.

A portion of this exhibit is still on view in the Center's exhibition cases.

Circle of the Spirit
Navajo & Tibetan Wisdom for Living


Navajo and Tibetan children
Exhibition Dates: Mar 13 - Oct 22, 2005


This exhibition was accompanied by special programs with visiting Tibetan monks from the Gaden Shartse Monastery in India, including a solstice sighting, tea offering, sand mandala, music and chanting. After its exhibition at the Center, the exhibit traveled to the Navajo Nation Museum.

 

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