Seminar: In Dialogue with Native Identities and Representations

May 1, 2016 @ 10:30 am – 12:30 pm
Edward Sheriff Curtis, A Gray Day in the Bad Lands, 1905
Edward Sheriff Curtis (American, 1868–1952), A Gray Day in the Bad Lands, 1905, plate 86 from the portfolio The North American Indian, volume 9, photogravure, gift of Henrietta E. Failing.


This seminar explores how Northwest tribal and urban Native communities are reclaiming the post-industrial landscape as part of the Indigenous Resurgence movement.  An herbal tea will be served.

Judy BlueHorse Skelton (Nez Perce/Cherokee) is on the faculty of the Indigenous Nations Studies Program, Portland State University. She teaches Environmental Sustainability through Indigenous Practices, Contemporary Issues in Indian Country, and Indigenous Gardens and Food Justice and is a co-founding member of the Inter-Tribal Gathering Gardens. She has worked with federal, state, and local Native organizations and tribes throughout the Northwest for more than 25 years, creating cultural activities focusing on traditional and contemporary uses of native plants for food, medicine, ceremony, and healthy lifeways.

In Dialogue is a new occasional series of interdisciplinary, discussion-based seminars that explore art on view at the Museum in relation to works in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences.

Contemporary Native Photographers and the Edward Curtis Legacy stages a conversation through images. The exhibition juxtaposes Curtis’ monumental, romanticized record of tribal lives 100 years ago with the work of twenty-first-century Native artists who challenge popular myths of the “noble savage” and the “vanishing race.” Taken together, these works raise critical questions about the portrayal of Native American experiences over the last century. The In Dialogue series of small-group, discussion-based seminars invites you to join in the conversation as we explore Native identities and representations through topics in literature and film, education and citizenship, law and sovereignty, and environmental justice.

Space is limited and advance registration is required. Cost per session: $10 Members/$19.99 non-member. Educator and student discount available.

The series is co-sponsored by Portland State University-University Studies.

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The Portland Art Museum is pleased to offer accommodations to ensure that our programs are accessible and inclusive. All spaces for this program are accessible by wheelchair. Assistive listening devices are also available for lectures. All restrooms have accessible stalls but no power doors. There are single-stall all-gender bathrooms available. Please ask staff for directions.

We will do our best to accommodate your needs when you arrive, however, we need 2-3 weeks advance notice for some specific requests. Please email requests to, or call 503-226-2811.