August 29 – October 15, 2016
What do we mean when we talk about aesthetics and aesthetic traditions?
Corollary Acts brings together the artistic expressions of ten contemporary Native American artists with works from the Southwest Art collections of Colorado College and the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. Through this combination, the exhibition seeks to demonstrate the continual evolution of artistic expression, and highlight the ways in which artists innovate and adapt new materials and media to espress their own creative visions.
What underlying expectations may we have for Native American art and artists?
Many museum collections were created at a time when it was thought that Native American peoples and their cultures would not withstand the expansion of settler colonial nation states into their traditional territories and their traditions, and ways of life would be lost forever. Despite the continuous existence and vitality of Native communities in the 21st Century, exhibitions of Native American artworks held in museum collections often continue to foregroud historical conditions, thus demonstrating an underlying belief that Native cultures exist solely in the past. Exhibiting historical work with contemporary artistic expressions of Native American Artists demonstrates the falsehood of the idea of the “Vanishing Indian”.
What qualities make art created by Native Americans “Native American Art”?
While current critiques of anthropology, art history, and museums view the paring of contemporary Native American art with historical objects as reductive – and therefore potentially problematic — Corollary Acts deliberately engages this strategy with the intention to uncover assumptions regarding contemporary Native American art and to challenge the vary definition of ‘art’ itself. Although this exhibition does not intend to provide definitive answers to the questions it raises, it does extend an invitation to discuss issues concerning aesthetics and aesthetic traditions. And, most importantly, the exhibition provides an opportunity for us to examine our expectations of Native American artists and their art, asking us to consider what constitutes Native American art in the 21st Century.
Featured Contemporary Artists:
Dwayne Manual; Joy Farley; Jaque Fragua; Preston Duwyenie; Marlowe Katoney; Marcie Rose Brewer; Rose B. Simpson; Will Wilson; Diego Romero; Teri Greeves; Virgil Ortiz.
Curated my Michelle McGeough
Sponsored by The Cultural Attractions Fund, the Hulbert Center for Southwest Studies, and the Art Department Stillman Fund for Exhibitions