Déaxitchish / Pretty Eagle
Wendy Red Star
Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art
On View: American Art Galleries, 5th Floor, From Colonies to States, 1660–1830
Wendy Red Star’s 1880 Crow Peace Delegation
series features the artist’s notations about Native heritage, history, and identity, handwritten on reproductions of Charles Milton Bell’s photographs of Crow leaders. The original photographs were taken during a historic meeting of the Crow delegation with the U.S. government in Washington, DC, in 1880, to negotiate the expansion of the Northern Pacific Railroad through the Crow reservation. Shortly after, these photographs began to circulate as part of a stereotyped, commercialized, and flattened understanding of Native American leadership.
The artist’s notes elucidate the meaning of various costume elements, educating non-Indigenous viewers while commenting on white Americans’ ignorance of Native American culture. Red Star also includes information about each chief: anecdotes of bravery, personal details, and a note about how Pretty Eagle’s body was kept for seventy-two years at the American Museum of Natural History, a potent institutional critique.
This series includes five additional portraits of these five leaders; for more information, visit www.wendyredstar.com
each panel: 25 × 17 in. (63.5 × 43.2 cm) (show scale)
Gift of Loren G. Lipson, M.D.
© Wendy Red Star
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Wendy Red Star (Apsáalooke (Crow), born 1981). Déaxitchish / Pretty Eagle, 2014. Inkjet print, each panel: 25 × 17 in. (63.5 × 43.2 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Loren G. Lipson, M.D., 2018.19.4b. © artist or artist's estate (Photo: , CUR.2018.19.4b.jpg)
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