ARTS, CRAFTS




THE NATIVE AMERICANS: AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY, Turner Publishing, 1993, ISBN 1-878685-42-2, 480 pages hardbound, profusely illustrated with high-quality works by Native artists ancient and modern, many maps, bibliography, picture source ID's, originally $50 US, can be found for $25 at many bookstores. (Grades 5-adult)

I should put this book on the Middle School, young adult and adult pages. It belongs in every native classroom and evry school library that purports to "cover" Indians in Nartiv minority-diversity studies. It is a history, but because of the unparalled array of illustrations, all of Native art work, is covered as an art book.

The writing is good, clear, not simplistic. Distinguished Native scholars, writers, and artists were involved in the project, which appears to have been an outgrowth of Turner's PBS Native American Series (of 1993). Researchers scoured museums for paintings by Native artists, like Minnesota's Patrick DesJarlait (honored here on the ArtPages to illustrate processes of daily life, attitudes toward the spirits and cosmos,, attitudes of Natives to whites of various sorts (there's a wonderful 1946 painting by Woody Crumbo, some supercilious fat white tourists buying blankets from a poor Navajo family). History goes up to the prsent, and covers subsistence -- early agricultural and architectural developments, clothing, art, customs, and after the Europeans arrived, the dismal history of that, through the present-day political revival, which possibly began with the occupation of Alcatraz in 1969. Wounded Knee, the American Indian Movement, casinos, Canada, Nunavut -- they all are covered with beautiful illustrations and informative, emotive photos. There is now a video and a CDROM available for the book from AISES, see the Audio-Visual page here. Though Turner is not a Native company, the Native viewpoint shows everywhere in this beautiful book. Very highly recommended--both book and CDROM. Reviewed by Paula Giese.


File: art2003

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Native American BOOKS, text and graphics copyright Paula Giese, 1996

Last Updated: Monday, October 28, 1996 - 4:07:17 AM