By Dominique Godreche
For a Parisian public largely unfamiliar with contemporary Native American art, the opportunity to view the works and meet the artists was unprecedented. French ideas about American Indians, like those of many people around the world, remain associated with the “romantic” vision derived from Hollywood movies and the photos of Edward Curtis: Feathers, leather and face paint. Many visitors were taken aback by the display of modern Native creativity. “I am surprised by the great diversity,” said one. “These works are all grouped under the label ‘native.’ I am looking for a common touch in the paintings, and I don’t see one. Coming to this show, I had a simplistic vision, a fantasy of a single unified culture. But I see a wide variety in this art; these painters are drawing on their culture’s past, yes, but from modernity and classicism as well.”
Below: "Artist Yatika Fields in Paris."