Siyosapa: At the Edge of Art
National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, DC 20012, USA
Arts 2019, 8(4), 148; https://doi.org/10.3390/arts8040148
Received: 6 August 2019 / Revised: 24 September 2019 / Accepted: 8 October 2019 / Published: 5 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Native Survivance and Visual Sovereignty: Indigenous Visual and Material Culture in the 19th and 20th Centuries)
The art history of Native North America built its corpus through considerations of “art-by-appropriation,” referring to selections of historically produced objects reconsidered as art, due to their artful properties, in addition to “art-by-intention,” referring to the work by known artists intended for the art market. The work of Siyosapa, a Hunkpapa/Yanktonai holy man active at Fort Peck, Montana during the 1880s and 1890s, troubles these distinctions with his painted drums and muslin paintings featuring the Sun Dance sold to figures of colonial authority: Military officers, agency officials, and others. This essay reassembles the corpus of his work through the analysis of documentary and collections records. In their unattributed state, some of his creations proved very influential during early attempts by art museums to define American Indian art within a modernist, twentieth century sense of world art history. However, after reestablishing Siyosapa’s agency in the creation and deployment of his drums and paintings, a far more complicated story emerges. While seemly offering “tourist art” or “market art,” his works also resemble diplomatic presentations, and represent material representations of his spiritual powers. View Full-Text
Keywords: Sioux; Yanktonai; Hunkpapa; Fort Peck; drum; Sun Dance; painting; American Indian art; Native American art►▼ Show Figures
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited
MDPI and ACS Style
Penney, D.W. Siyosapa: At the Edge of Art. Arts 2019, 8, 148.
AMA StyleShow more citation formats Show less citations formats
Penney DW. Siyosapa: At the Edge of Art. Arts. 2019; 8(4):148.Chicago/Turabian Style
Penney, David W. 2019. "Siyosapa: At the Edge of Art." Arts 8, no. 4: 148.
Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.
Article Access Statistics
Multiple requests from the same IP address are counted as one view.