Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists

Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists

June 2, 2019 – August 18, 2019

Presented by:

About the Exhibition

Women have long been the creative force behind Native art. Presented in close cooperation with top Native women artists and scholars, this first major exhibition of artwork by Native women honors the achievements of over 115 artists from the United States and Canada spanning over 1,000 years. Their triumphs—from pottery, textiles, and painting, to photographic portraits, to a gleaming El Camino—show astonishing innovation and technical mastery. Learn more about the exhibition from our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Following its debut at Mia, “Hearts of Our People” traveled to the Frist Museum in Nashville on September 27, 2019 – January 12, 2020, to the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C. February 21 – August 2, 2020,  and will be opening at the Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa October 7, 2020 – January 3, 2021.

Videos: Artist Profiles, Symposium, Round Table

Hearts of Our People: Native Voices

This exhibition is a tribute to all Native women artists, families, and nations throughout all time and space. It is their minds, hearts, and hands that have birthed their worlds, and this exhibition, into being.

Watch Here

Audio Tour

Hearts of Our People: Audio Tour

“Hearts of Our People” began with a question: Why do Native women make art? We chose to respond within three core themes: Legacy, Relationships, and Power.

Explore the Works

Educational Resource

Native Art, Native Voices

A Resource for K-12 Learners
This resource is designed to support the integration of Native voices and art into K-12 curriculum. It includes artist interviews, essays about artworks in Mia’s collection and questions to support deep looking, critical thinking, and discussion, art lessons developed by and with Minnesota Native artists, and reading selections for students to help provide environmental context for the artworks. “Native Art, Native Voices” includes information about Native cultures both past and present and supports Minnesota state standards for visual arts and social studies/U.S. history.


About the Native Exhibition Advisory Board

In 2015, Jill Ahlberg Yohe and Teri Greeves, curators of Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists, formed the Native Exhibition Advisory Board—a panel of 21 Native artists and Native and non-Native scholars from across North America to provide insights from a wide range of nations at every step in the curatorial process.

Exhibition Advisory Board members include:

heather ahtone, Choctaw/Chickasaw, senior curator, American Indian Cultural Center and Museum, Oklahoma City; DY Begay, Navajo artist, Santa Fe; Janet Berlo, professor of Art History and Visual and Cultural Studies, University of Rochester; Susan Billy, Pomo artist, Ukiah, California; Katie Bunn-Marcuse, director and managing editor, Bill Holm Center for the Study of Northwest Coast Art, Burke Museum, Seattle; Christina Burke, curator, Native American and Non-Western Art, Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa; Kelly Church, Anishinaabe artist and educator, Michigan; Nadia Jackinsky, Alutiiq art historian, Anchorage; Heid Erdrich, Ojibwe writer and curator, Minneapolis; Anita Fields, Osage artist, Tulsa; Adriana Greci Green, curator, Indigenous Arts of the Americas, The Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia; Carla Hemlock, Mohawk artist, Kahnewake; America Meredith, Cherokee, publishing editor of First American Art Magazine, Oklahoma City; Nora Naranjo Morse, Santa Clara artist; Cherish Parrish, Anishinaabe artist and educator, University of Michigan; Ruth Phillips, Canada Research Professor and Professor of Art History, Carleton University; Jolene K. Rickard, Tuscarora, artist and Associate Professor, The Department of the History of Art and Visual Studies, Cornell University; Lisa Telford, Haida artist, Seattle; Graci Horne, Dakhóta, independent curator, Minneapolis; and Dyani White Hawk, Lakȟóta artist and curator, Minneapolis.

Christi Belcourt; Michif, b. 1966; The Wisdom of the Universe, 2014; Acrylic on canvas; 67 5/16 × 111 in.; Collection Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; Purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014; 2014/6; © Christi Belcourt