Woody Crumbo: Pan-Indian Powwow

In this exhibition, eleven different varieties of Indigenous American dance are showcased. Woody Crumbo’s vibrant screen prints bring these dances, each with its own unique history and tribal tradition, to life.

Please explore the media below to see some of the dances and hear the music featured in this exhibition. Click the "Play" triangle on the videos to enjoy along with the artwork.

Eagle Dance:

 

Originating with the Taos Pueblo tribe of New Mexico, the biannual Eagle Dance is one of prayer. Its dancers seek to bridge the gap between the terrestrial and celestial worlds by channeling the spirit of the eagle and giving flight to their prayers on hopeful wings.

Buffalo Dance:

 

The Buffalo Dance was an important ritual to several Plains Indian tribes. As the bison were central to their way of life, providing sustenance, shelter, and clothing, this dance was performed to celebrate the return of the herds and the assurance of the health and vitality of the tribe.

Deer Dance:

 

The Deer Dance is traditionally practiced by Yaqui and Pueblo tribes. A mimetic dance in which the performer embodies the subject, the Deer Dance gives thanks to the animal for its sacrifice while seeking to encourage balance in the natural world.

Feather Dance:

 

The Feather Dance, or Fancy Dance, is a Pan-Indian style of dance developed in the Oklahoma reservations. After many spiritually significant dances were outlawed in the late 19th century, such as the Sun Dance, Indigenous Americans developed new forms of dance that would be deemed “appropriate” to perform. Derived from ancestral War Dances, the Feather Dance was one such innovation. Professional Fancy Dancers, like Woody Crumbo, would perform at powwows and “Wild West” shows for fellow Indigenous people and white visitors alike.

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