News Release: Native art celebrated at Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival as new galleries open
Triumphant return of in-person market; $30,000 in prize money awarded to top artists
Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award winner:
Salisha Old Bull (Salish / Crow)
Quasqui, Storm, Five Friends & the Canoe
INDIANAPOLIS — The 30th annual Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival on June 25-26 made a spectacular return as an in-person event for the first time since 2019. The Eiteljorg Museum welcomed 126 Native American artists from 60 cultures across the U.S. and Canada, who showed and sold their handmade art to approximately 4,000 weekend visitors in downtown Indianapolis. The 30th annual Indian Market and Festival coincided with the grand opening of the Eiteljorg’s new Native American Galleries that achieve a beautifully different presentation of Native art.
During Indian Market and Festival weekend, artists presented works from multiple disciplines, including jewelry, pottery, basketry, beadwork, carvings, paintings, weavings and cultural items. Visitors could engage with the artists at their booths, purchase their art and enjoy music dance and cultural performances at the museum and on the grounds. The Indiana Corn Marketing Council and Indiana Soybean Alliance were the 2022 presenting sponsors of the Indian Market and Festival, an event that had been virtual in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Eiteljorg Museum concurrently celebrated two milestones: our 30th annual Indian Market and Festival, one of Indianapolis’ biggest cultural events, and the opening of our new Native American Galleries, featuring the exhibition Expressions of Life: Native Art in North America,” Eiteljorg President and CEO John Vanausdall said. “The tremendously enthusiastic response we received to the in-person market and the new galleries from visitors, art collectors and artists alike is an indication of the Eiteljorg’s important role in the Midwest and beyond in celebrating Native arts, histories and cultures.”
At Indian Market and Festival, artists could enter their works into a juried competition, through which approximately $30,000 in cash prizes as well as ribbons were awarded. Serving as judges of the art competition the day before the market were Nocona Burgess (Comanche), Scott Shoemaker, Ph.D. (Miami Tribe of Oklahoma) and Jason Wesaw (Pokagon Band of Potawatomi). Awards for Best of Show and other special categories were presented June 25 during the Market Morning Breakfast, held under the Eiteljorg Museum’s outdoor shade structure, The Sails, with artists and the market’s most loyal supporters present.
The annual Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award is presented for works the museum acquires during Indian Market and Festival to add to its permanent collections. The 2022 purchase award went to Salisha Old Bull (Salish / Crow) of Arlee, Montana, for a beaded cradleboard titled Quasqui, Storm, Five Friends & the Canoe.
Margot L. Eccles Best of Show Award winner:
Dawn Dark Mountain (Oneida of Wisconsin)
The Only Good Indian is an Assimilated Indian
This year, a $5,000 cash prize was presented to the artist whose work won the Margot L. Eccles Best of Show Award: Dawn Dark Mountain (Oneida of Wisconsin) of Santa Fe, New Mexico, for her watercolor painting The Only Good Indian is an Assimilated Indian. Supported by The Margot L. Eccles Arts & Culture Fund (a fund of the Central Indiana Community Foundation), the Best of Show award is named for the late Margot Eccles, a civic leader, philanthropist, art collector, Eiteljorg board member and past chair of Indian Market and Festival, who brought passion, vision and generosity to the annual event.
Here are other annual awards presented at the 30th annual Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival:
- The Helen Cox Kersting Award is given to an artist whose work exemplifies the highest quality of execution and innovation within a traditional Native art medium. This year’s award went to Leah Mata Fragua and Cliff Fragua (yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini Northern Chumas Tribe) of Jemez Pueblo, New Mexico, for their carving, Toypurina-Mission Resistance.
Margot L. Eccles Youth Award winner:
Aydrian James Day (Anishinaabe / Hochunk / Lakota)
Dibaajimowin Makizinan (Story Mocassins)
- The Margot L. Eccles Youth Award encourages the next generation of young artists. This year it was presented to Aydrian James Day (Anishinaabe / Hochunk / Lakota) of Suttons Bay, Michigan, for Dibaajimowin Makizinan (Strong Mocassins).
The 2022 Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival Best of Division award recipients in each art category are:
- Paintings, Drawings, Prints, Photography and Prints: Dawn Dark Mountain (Oneida of Wisconsin) of Santa Fe, New Mexico, for The Only Good Indian is an Assimilated Indian
- Sculpture: Sam Dimmick (Alaska Eskimo) of Sacramento, California, for Walrus Ivory Tusk
- Carvings and Dolls: Leah Mata Fragua and Cliff Fragua (yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini Northern Chumas Tribe) of Jemez Pueblo, New Mexico, for Toypurina-Mission Resistance
- Jewelry: Ric Charlie (Navajo / Dine), of Goodyear, Arizona, for Navajo Bling
- Pottery: Pahponee (Kansas Kickapoo Tribe / Prairie Band of Potawatomi), of Sidney, Nebraska, for Woodlands Seed Pot
- Basketry: Holly Pyke (Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe) of Hogansburg, New York, for Purple Strawberry Basket
- Weavings and Textiles: Jillian Waterman (Saginaw Chippewa) of Traverse City, Michigan, for Quilled Birchbark Plague Doctor
- Cultural Items: Glenda McKay (Ingalik-Athabaskan) of Santa Fe, New Mexico, for Traditional Walrus Harpoon
- Beadwork: Salisha Old Bull (Salish /Crow) of Arlee, Montana, for Quasqui, Storm, Five Friends & the Canoe.
The work chosen as the 2022 Indian Market and Festival signature piece was a necklace titled Kewa Birds by Mary Louise Tafoya (Kewa Pueblo) of Santo Domingo Pueblo, New Mexico. An image of the necklace became the design for this year’s commemorative Indian Market T-shirts. Images of the winning artworks in all categories are at this link: Eiteljorg.org/IndianMarketandFestival.
In addition to presenting sponsors the Indiana Corn Marketing Council and the Indiana Soybean Alliance, the 30th annual Indian Market and Festival receives support from the Margot L. Eccles Arts & Culture Fund (a CICF Fund), Ice Miller, LDI, Ltd., the Penrod Society, the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation, Pat and Bob Anker, the Indiana Arts Commission and the Arts Council of the City of Indianapolis.
First held in 1993, the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival has grown into one of the top Native art markets in the nation. Artists must be enrolled members of a federally or state-recognized tribe or members of a First Nation to participate in the market; and their entries must be in compliance with the Indian Arts and Crafts Act, handmade within the past two years, and available for purchase during the market. This year marked the largest number of artists to apply for Indian Market and Festival in more than a decade. The weekend saw steady attendance as market-goers shopped at artists’ booths and also explored the new Native American Galleries on the museum’s second floor.
About the Eiteljorg
A cultural pillar for nearly 33 years in downtown Indianapolis’ scenic White River State Park, the Eiteljorg Museum seeks to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the arts, histories and cultures of the Native peoples of North America and of the American West by telling amazing stories. Located on the Central Canal at 500 West Washington St., the Eiteljorg is a 501c3 nonprofit organization. It was named one of the USA Today Readers’ Choice 10 Best Indiana Attractions.
View all award-winning artworks at this link.
Eiteljorg Museum Media Contacts
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Editor’s Note: An article about longtime Indian Market and Festival artist Tim Blueflint Ramel (Bad River Chippewa / Comanche) appeared in the October/November 2022 issue of Native American Art magazine. Read the story here:
Tim Blueflint Ramel article_Native American Art magazine
Editor’s Note: An article about longtime Indian Market and Festival artist Shirley Brauker (Little River Band of Odawa) appeared in the June 2017 issue of the Eiteljorg Museum’s Storyteller magazine. Read the profile here: