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Native Americans created and used many shapes, designs, colors, and materials as an expression of their cultures and identities. Native art designs became a way to communicate tribal and family traditions and individual artistic skill and expression. These art forms have adapted over time and ensure that future generations continue traditions and reinforce tribal identity.
In this live and interactive program led by a museum educator, children will explore art forms based on region or tribal nation. By examining and looking closer at one art form, students will better understand how diverse Native cultures are.
The Art of Totem Poles
How do animals appear in art traditions throughout American Indian cultures? Native nations along the North Pacific Coast have long used animals in their living stories and to represent their clans. One way these nations, such as the Tsimshian, incorporate animals into their art is with totem poles. Totem poles are tall, wooden sculptures carved with images of animals and symbols. They serve to record history and tell stories. Movement is part of this program.
This 30min event will take place every Thursday at 2pm ET through the 26th of August.
Recommended for ages 5-10 years old.
Photo Credit: David Boxley’s The Eagle and The Chief” Totem Pole. National Museum of the American Indian.