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June 10 - September 4

ammaakuúko

alienable noun
1 inheritance
2 something left for progeny

An inspiring exhibition at The Brinton Museum that celebrates the multigenerational creativity within one Apsáalooke family, showcasing the artworks of Ben Pease V alongside the artistic journey of eight generations of his Apsáalooke ancestors, relatives, and children.

Situated below the Bighorn Mountains, on traditional Apsáalooke lands, the exhibition emphasizes the importance of place, cultural heritage, history, and exchange in shaping the family’s enduring creative spirit. The show delves into the family’s connections with local institutions and dude ranches, significantly contributing to cultural exchange and promoting their traditional and contemporary arts and crafts.

With this celebration of his family’s artistic heritage, Ben Pease V invites audiences to explore the intergenerational connections that enrich the cultural fabric of the Apsáalooke community and contribute to the broader human experience. This compelling exhibition offers a unique glimpse into the art, history, and creativity of the Apsáalooke people, making it a must-see for museum visitors who appreciate the value of cultural heritage and the power of artistic expression.

Central to the installation is four wool blankets, each embodying the Apsáalooke’s rich cultural heritage. Antique U.S. army green and Hudson’s Bay 3.5 bar wool blankets adorning beaded trade beads, cotton giveaway cloth, and cattle marker oil sticks. Contemporary Pendleton and Eighth Generation Native Made wool blankets incorporate similar materials, bridging the past and present.

The chrome-painted buffalo skull is a poignant reminder of the decimation of the once-abundant large land-based keystone species in the modern world. The iconic Bishé skull symbolizes the current efforts of many in reintroducing and rewilding bison to rejuvenate and revitalize our shared ecosystems. The reflective chrome surface encourages humans to contemplate their role in both the destruction and potential restoration of this majestic species.

A wheelbarrow, ever-present at funerals in the artist’s hometown of Lodge Grass, Montana, and the Valley of the Chiefs stands as a testament to Apsáalooke burial traditions. Alongside wooden-handled steel shovels, this ordinary object embodies the final act of shoveling after funerals, further connecting visitors to the cultural significance of the installation.

The Brinton Museum houses the installation, which holds artworks by the artist’s great-grandmother, personal items, and photographs of his great-great-grandfather. As the museum resides in the traditional homeland of the Apsáalooke people, it is essential to examine the roles of institutions in the evolving cultural and societal landscape while considering the rapidly shifting global context.

“Our origins of creation are cross-sections of our life in this world. The stars and worlds above guide us in all things holy and earthly and otherworldly. We connect our prayers, thoughts, and experiences to them as the fluidity of time stirs. There is power in growth and change. Here we confront death and celebrate life by giving breath to new ways of making medicine while we still can.”

PROTECTORS is the central installation in the exhibit. It is comprised of a range of found and modified materials, as well as original artwork.

The Four Blankets captures the spirit of resilience, adaptability and spiritual metamorphosis, presenting a journey encapsulating the challenges faced by the Apsáalooke in the wake of colonization, disease, and climate change.

Army blanket, Ben Pease

U.S. Army Blanket
Ben Pease V
wool and oil stick
President Lincoln, Chief Sitting Bull, Chief Plenty Coups, and Lt. Cl. George Armstrong Custer

Stripped Blanket, Ben Pease 

Hudson’s Bay Trading Company Blanket
Ben Pease V
wool and oil stick
Queen Elizabeth, Louis Riel, Justin Trudeau and Chief Blackfoot

Navy Blanket, Bean Pease

Blue Sailor’s Blanket
Ben Pease V
wool and oil stick
Buffalo Bill Cody, Theodore Roosevelt, Sacagawea, and Chief Two Moons

checkered blanket, Ben Pease

Eighth Generation, B. Yellowtail Blanket
Ben Pease V
wool and oil stick
Deb Haaland, Billy Frank, Jr., Winona LaDulze, and Wilma Man Killer

Buffalo skull, Ben Pease

(Center)
BUFFALO SKULL
Ben Pease V
acrylic and graphite silver painted
The chrome painted buffalo skull is a poignant reminder of the decimation of the once-abundant large land-based keystone species in the modern world. The iconic Bishé skull symbolizes the current efforts of many in reintroducing and rewilding bison to rejuvenate and revitalize our shared ecosystems. The reflective chrome surface encourages humans to contemplate their role in both the destruction and potential restoration of this majestic species.

Wheel barrel, Ben Pease

WHEELBARROW
A wheelbarrow, ever-present at funerals in the Ben Pease’s hometown of Lodge Grass, Montana, and the valley of the Chiefs, stands as a testament to Apsáalooke burial traditions. Alongside wooden-handled steel shovels, this ordinary object embodies the final act of shoveling after funerals, connecting visitors to the cultural significance of this installation.

iPad Shield, Ben Pease

Sudakaake, A Keeper in Place & Time
(neon shield)
Ben Pease V
Bison rawhide, ermine skins, imitation hawk
feathers, earth pigments, brass, wool,
neon light, IPAD, sound bar, plexiglass,
steel and cotton

Opening reception June 10th, from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

 

This exhibition is made possible through the generous support of the E. T. Meredith Foundation and the Wyoming Arts Council.