Nez Perce bead exhibit will open on Feb. 27
A “Pictorial Beading the Nez Perce Way” exhibit that includes a retrospective of Nez Perce beadwork over the last 160 years, selections from the collections of bead artist Marcus Amerman, and new works from local bead artists will be on display at the Lewis-Clark State College’s Center for Arts & History.
The exhibition opens Feb. 27 with a reception for the artists at 4-7 p.m. in Gallery II of the Center, which is located at 415 Main St. in Lewiston. Four artists, Bernice Moffett, Bev Allen, Gary Green, and Kevin Peters, will lead a panel discussion about their work at 6-7 p.m.
A reception for Amerman, a master craftsman and international artist, will be in the Main Gallery of the CAH on March 11 at 5 p.m.
The exhibit will run through April 8.
The exhibit will include objects on loan from the Nez Perce National Historical Park Museum as well as selections from Amerman’s personal and private collections.
Preparation for the exhibit began in November with an introduction to the pictorial beading technique by Allen of the Confederated Tribes of the Yakima Nation, a former student of Amerman. Each participating artist completed 1-3 new works using the pictorial beading style that will be on display. Other local artists in the show include Florene Davis, Gayle Bear, Sylvia Mitchell, Marci Bailey, Brooklyn Baptiste, Jean Anne Moose, Elsie Cree, and Bessie Blackeagle
The focus of this project was to challenge a group of skilled Nez Perce tribal members to create new beadworks using the pictorial beading technique. Pictorial beading designs use realistic images as a pattern for a beaded surface. Finished works that include faces, animals and landscape scenes resemble 3-D picture images.
Amerman is an enrolled Choctaw Indian from Oklahoma and resides in Santa Fe, N.M. He received a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from Whitman College in Walla Walla, Wash., and has also studied at the College of Santa Fe, the Institute of the American Indian Arts, and the Anthropology Film Center, all in Santa Fe.
A master bead worker, Amerman also works in other mediums, such as performance art. His work has been featured in various publications and many contemporary art exhibits. These include “Indian Humor”, a traveling exhibition organized by the American Indian Contemporary Arts in San Francisco and “Pathways of Tradition: Indian Insights into the Indian Worlds” at the George Gustav Heye Center of the National Museum of the American Indian and the Smithsonian Institution.
A number of public collections display his work, including the National Museum of the American Indian and the Smithsonian Institution, both in Washington D.C.; the American Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City, Heard Museum in Phoenix, and the Portland Art Museum.
This exhibition is presented to the public through partnerships with the Lewis-Clark Service Corp AmeriCorps Program at LCSC, the Nez Perce National Historical Park Museum, and the Nez Perce Tribe. The project is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Idaho Commission on the Arts, and the Nez Perce Tribe.
The CAH is open Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Information regarding current and upcoming exhibitions may be found on the web at www.lcsc.edu/museum , or by calling (208) 792-2243.