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Totems to Turquoise Exhibition Text

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Two Museum cases feature artifacts from the Totems to Turquoise Exhibition. The case on the left displays a mask above the text "Transformation. When a bear becomes a human". The case on the right reads "Raven the Trickster".

This exhibition celebrates the beauty, power, and symbolism of historic as well as modern Native American jewelry arts. Totems to Turquoise illustrates how techniques, materials, and styles have evolved as Native American jewelers have adapted to technical, societal, and commercial changes, transforming traditional craft into a full-fledged mode of artistic expression. The exhibition highlights the cultural similarities and differences of the Northwest and Southwest, the role of tribal and individual identity in design, and how artists incorporate images from their physical landscape into their work.

The exhibition originally preseted with over 500 objects including artwork from the Haida, Kwakwaka’wakw, Tsimshian, Gitxsan, Nisga’a, Tlingit, Nuu-chah-nulth, Haisla, and Salish tribes of the Northwest, and the Navajo, Zuni, Hopi, Santo Domingo, Taos and other Pueblos, Apache, and Tohono O’odham tribes of the Southwest.


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