Sindy Libby Keahbone and Hannah Keahbone
Oklahoma City, OK
[photo snapped at the National Museum of the American Indian, For a Love of his People: The Photography of Horace Poolaw exhibit]
“Reportedly, Hannah was a rebel. Traditional artist Vanessa Jennings remembered that she defied temperance laws and wore makeup. ‘She was bold and beautiful. The rules for women and their physical appearance at this time [where] harshly regulated by the field matrons at the Anadarko Indian Agency. You were supposed to be dressed like a super-modest white woman and NO makeup.’ Despite the agency, twentieth-century Kiowa mothers and daughters negotiated the terms of female identity among themselves.”
I’ve been traveling a TON this summer. In fact, this past weekend was one of the first times I’ve had to relax and enjoy life at home. Not wanting to miss an opportunity to play a tourist in my own backyard, I popped over to Navy Pier to check out EXPO CHICAGO, a massive display of contemporary and modern artwork from more than 140 galleries around the globe.
I’d originally planned to go with a friend, and at first, I was disappointed when I learned that she wouldn’t be able to attend. So I went by myself instead, and ended up being pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed my solo journey.
It gave me time to browse through the collections at my own pace, and get lost in my own thoughts. Much like the woman in this piece found in a curated “Wind” gallery, I found myself pedaling through a cycle of reflections, interrupted by striking creations and pops of color.
I read on one of the signs in the entryway that the exposition architect actually designed the art hall space to feel like a maze. There were little alleys and nooks that you had to turn into to find more treasures on display. And you had to back out of those turns to explore other galleries. There were also a few central hallways and a diagonal pathway that you could follow to see select highlights if you didn’t want to meander through all of the exhibits.
I saw some pieces that used common objects, re-imagined. Mark Wagner created this currency collage using dollar bills. (It had me feeling all Wu-Tang Clan. Did someone say dolla dolla bear, y’all?)
This bronze and iron sculpture created by Manolo Valdés reminded me of the days I adorned a giant hat and wig for a ballet production of The Nutcracker. (They were both gorgeous headpieces, but oh, so heavy!)
This glass sculpture, assembled by artist Dustin Yellin, was created using layers of collage, glass and acrylic. It’s amazing to see the details up close, and the layers when looked at from the side.
What was the last piece of art that you saw that stopped and made you think? Or see the world in a new way? I’m on my way to a work-related art event later this week. (Recap to come on that project soon!)