Native America: In Translation

Nalikutaar Jacqueline Cleveland. Molly Alexie and her children after a harvest of beach greens in Quinhagak, Alaska, 2018. Courtesy of the artist.

About the Exhibition

Native America: In Translation brings together the works of nine Native artists who explore aspects of community, heritage, and the legacy of colonialism on the North American continent. By posing challenging questions about land rights, identity, and the legacy of violence toward Native people perpetrated by settler governments, the artists probe the fraught history of photography in representing Indigenous populations. Representing diverse nations and affiliations, the artists reclaim complex personal and collective narratives to imagine new histories of image-making. “The ultimate form of decolonization is through how Native languages form a view of the world,” exhibition curator Wendy Red Star notes. “These artists provide sharp perceptions, rooted in their cultures.”

Native America: In Translation features works by Rebecca Belmore, Nalikutaar Jacqueline Cleveland, Martine Gutierrez, Koyoltzintli, Duane Linklater, Guadalupe Maravilla, Kimowan Metchewais, Alan Michelson, and Marianne Nicolson.

Native America: In Translation is curated by Wendy Red Star as she expands on her role as guest editor of the Fall 2020 issue of Aperture magazine. The exhibition is organized by Aperture and is made possible, in part, with generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The MoCP presentation of Native America: In Translation is supported by Columbia College Chicago, MoCP Advisory Board, the Museum Council, individuals, and private and corporate foundations. The 2023–2024 exhibition season is sponsored in part by the Comer Family Foundation, Efroymson Family Fund, Henry Nias Foundation, Phillip and Edith Leonian Foundation, and Pritzker Traubert Foundation. This project is partially supported by the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and a CityArts grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. 

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