Wendy Red Star
1/30/2021 - 4/25/2021

Wendy Red Star (Apsáalooke, born 1981) works across media to explore the intersections of Native American ideologies and colonialist structures, both historically and in contemporary society. Her installations and photographic practice build upon years of research in photographic archives and museum collections of historical Apsáalooke artwork.

Red Star’s Karen and Doug Riley Contemporary Artists Project (CAP) Gallery exhibition engages the history of the 1898 Indian Congress, an unprecedented convening of over thirty Native American tribes during Nebraska’s Trans-Mississippi Exposition. This immersive, site-specific installation draws from and reframes her research into exposition photographs, memorabilia collections, and historic sites in Omaha and Montana. Red Star draws from the Omaha Public Library’s significant collection of photographs taken by Frank Rinehart (1861–1928), a Nebraskan famous for his portraits of Indian Congress members such as White Swan, a well-known Apsáalooke scout (pictured below left). Red Star metaphorically reconvenes White Swan and hundreds of Native delegation members in the Riley CAP gallery to investigate the Apsáalooke and Indigenous histories of Omaha.

About Wendy Red Star
Baaéetitchish (One Who Is Talented), references the Apsáalooke name Wendy Red Star received while visiting home. It is the original name of her grand-uncle, Clive Francis Dust, Sr., known in the family for his creativity as a cultural keeper. Raised on the Apsáalooke (Crow) Indian Reservation in Montana, Red Star’s work is informed both by her cultural heritage and her research into archives and historical narratives. Through photography, sculpture, video, and fiber arts, Red Star seeks to present and reframe her research, offering new and unexpected perspectives that are at turns inquisitive, witty, and unsettling. Red Star holds a BFA from Montana State University, Bozeman, and an MFA in sculpture from University of California, Los Angeles. Her work can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Saint Louis Art Museum, Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, Minneapolis Institute of Art, and Autry Museum of the American West, among many others. She lives and works in Portland, Oregon.

Joslyn's Riley CAP Gallery exhibitions are supported by Douglas County, Catherine & Terry Ferguson, and Sara Foxley.

What's Pictured:
(Top) Wendy Red Star (Apsáalooke, born 1981), The Indian Congress, 2021, mixed media installation.

(Bottom) Wendy Red Star (Apsáalooke, born 1981), The Indian Congress, 2021, mixed media installation with reproduction of Frank Rinehart's White Swan, 1898, albumen silver print. Rinehart image courtesy Omaha Public Library.

Gallery photos: Colin Conces

Exhibition Program

Thursday, March 18 @ 6:30 pm
Virtual Program: Exploring the Work of Wendy Red Star

Free for all. Advance registration is required. Participants will need a computer or tablet with a webcam, microphone, and speakers, and should feel comfortable using Zoom, a web-based cloud platform.

Annika K. Johnson, Ph.D., Joslyn’s Associate Curator of Native American Art, offers a deep dive into Wendy Red Star's immersive CAP Gallery installation. Installation images and video will be incorporated into this virtual program as attendees learn about the exhibition's significant and detailed historical background.

Artist Interview

Last September, Annika K. Johnson, Ph.D., Joslyn's Associate Curator of Native American Art, conducted a virtual interview with artist Wendy Red Star. The discussion focused on Red Star's CAP Gallery exhibition at Joslyn and was part of our More for Members exclusive offerings.This fascinating virtual program is now available as Red Star's site-specific installation has opened to the public. Click here to watch and enjoy!