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Knowing Native Arts

Nancy Marie Mithlo

Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
Imprint: University of Nebraska Press
Published: 09/2020
Pages: 304
Subject: Social Science
eBook ISBN: 9781496221926


Knowing Native Arts brings Nancy Marie Mithlo's Native insider perspective to understanding the significance of Indigenous arts in national and global milieus. These musings, written from the perspective of a senior academic and curator traversing a dynamic and at turns fraught era of Native self-determination, are a critical appraisal of a system that is often broken for Native peoples seeking equity in the arts. Mithlo addresses crucial issues, such as the professionalization of Native arts scholarship, disparities in philanthropy and training, ethnic fraud, and the receptive scope of Native arts in new global and digital realms. This contribution to the field of fine arts broadens the scope of discussions and offers insights that are often excluded from contemporary appraisals.  


Nancy Marie Mithlo (Chiricahua Apache) is a professor of gender studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, and a senior curator and lecturer on Indigenous arts. She has curated Native arts exhibitions at the Venice Biennale, Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, and the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts. She is the editor of Manifestations: New Native Art Criticism and For a Love of His People: The Photography of Horace Poolaw.  


"This is a deeply personal book that blends Mithlo's personal, family, and tribal experiences with significant scholarship and meditation on the field of Native American art."—Ryan Wheeler, coeditor of Glory, Trouble, and Renaissance at the Robert S. Peabody Museum of Archaeology  

"Mithlo provides a rare opportunity to expose the truth and lay bare the great challenges and divides in contemporary Native arts. Her essays uncover, articulate, and open the discussion to illuminate the disenfranchisement of Native arts today."—Patsy Phillips (Cherokee), director of the Institute of American Indian Arts Museum of Contemporary Native Arts