Cover image for Native North American art
Native North American art
Berlo, Janet Catherine.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1998.
Physical Description:
ix, 291 pages : illustrations (some color), color maps ; 24 cm.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E98.A7 B47 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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This exciting investigation explores the indigenous arts of the US and Canada from the early pre-contact period to the present day, stressing the conceptual and iconographic continuities over five centuries and across an immensely diverse range of regions. The richness of Native American art is emphasized through discussions of basketry, wood and rock carvings, dance masks, and beadwork, alongside the contemporary vitality of paintings and installations by modern artists such as Robert Davidson, Emmi Whitehorse, and Alex Janvier. Authors Berlo and Philips fully incorporate substantive new research and scholarship, and examine such issues as gender, representation, the colonial encounter, and contemporary arts. By encompassing both the sacred and secular, political and domestic, the ceremonial and commercial, Native North American Art shows the importance of the visual arts in maintaining the integrity of spiritual, social, political, and economic systems within Native North American societies.

Author Notes

Janet Catherine Berlo is the Susan B. Anthony Chair of Gender and Women's Studies and Professor of Art History at the University of Rochester, New York.
Ruth Phillips is Director of the Museum of Anthropology and Professor of Fine Art and Anthropology at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 An Introduction to the Indigenous Arts of North America Art History and Native Art
What is 'Art'? Western Discourses and Native American Objects
Modes of Appreciation: Curiosity, Specimen, Artefact, and Art
What is an Indian? Clan, Community, Political Structure, and Art
The Map of the Cosmos
The Nature of Spirit
Dreams and the Vision Quest
Art and the Public Celebration of Power
The Power of Personal Adornment
'Creativity is our Tradition': Innovation and Tradition in Native American Art
Gender and the Making of Art
Chapter 2 The Southwest The Southwest as a Region
The Ancient World
From the Colonial Era to the Modern Pueblos
Navajo and Apache Arts
Chapter 3 The East The East as a Region
Hunting Cultures, Burial Practices, and Early Woodlands Art Forms
Mississippian Art and Culture
The Cataclysm of Contact: the Southeast
The Early Contact Period in the Northeast
Arts of the Middle Ground
Arts of Self-Adornment
Chapter 4 The West Introduction
The Great Plains
The Intermontaine Regionan Artistic Crossroads
The Far West: Arts of California and the Great Basin
Chapter 5 The North Geography, Environment, and Language in the North
Sub-Arctic Clothing: Art to Honour and Protect
The Arctic
Chapter 6 The Northwest Coast Origins
The Early Contact Period
Styles and Techniques
Western Connoisseurship and Northwest Coast Art
Crest Art
The Potlatch
Art, Commodity, and Concepts of Replication
Northwest Coast Art in the Twentieth Century
Chapter 7 The Twentieth Century: Trends in Modern Native Art Questions of Definition
Commoditization and Contemporary Art
Moments of Beginning
The Southern Plains and the Kiowa Five
The Southwest and the 'Studio' Style
The Display and Marketing of American Indian Art: Exhibitions, Mural Projects, and Competitions
Native American Modernisms 195080
Institutional Frameworks and Modernisms in Canada
Postmodernism, Installation, and other Post-Studio Art
Notes List of Illustrations
Bibliographic Essay Timeline