Evoking the Horse: Indigenous Artists of the North American Plains

evoking the horse  publicity image  medicine crow

Artist: Mona Bear Medicine Crow

The RAI is excited to announce its first exhibition of Native American art, curated by Natalie Hill (DPhil History, Oxford).

The exhibition will run from 2 May to 24 June 2022 and can be viewed in the downstairs common room areas of the RAI between 9am and 5pm. It is open to the public and there is no need to book.

Please also join us at 5pm on Tuesday 3 May for the official opening of the exhibition, with a brief introduction by Professor Charlene Villaseñor Black (Terra Visiting Professor of American Art 2021-22) followed by a wine reception. All are welcome.

For the first week of the exhibition, 2-6 May, a few additional, smaller artworks will be on display and Natalie will be invigilating these special items between 10am and 5pm. Come along to view and converse with the curator!

This exhibition showcases Native American art relating to horses, bringing together the artwork of several contemporary northern Plains artists. These collected works consider the relationship between people and horses, and the cultural, spiritual and political significance of the horse both in the past and today. Alongside this, the exhibition encourages reflection on the value of exploring art and objects in academic research. This small collection represents artists from the Apsáalooke (Crow), Pikuni (Blackfeet), and Lakota (western Sioux) Nations. It presents original artworks from Mona Bear Medicine Crow, Ernest Marceau, Birdie Real Bird, and Jeremy Johnson, along with printed works from Earl Biss and Butch Thunderhawk. The artists take inspiration from historical indigenous artistic traditions, such as ledger drawing, painted parfleche designs, and beadwork, whilst innovating and reworking ideas to respond to their contemporary world.