My Biography and note about NDN against NDN aWARds

BIO-RZS-2010       just the lists of shows,events,publications us artists have to keep listed and updated…

Since the award from the Heard, I  don’t compete in any of the Indian Art Market competitions.

I feel much of Native Art is being influenced by attempts to satisfy “expert judges”

and less and less about staying true to the evolving qualities within our own cultures.

The NDN against NDN  aWARds isn’t for me.

I hope that my life and work has a sense of quality without  ribbons attached.


20 responses

  1. Steve Reed

    Hey Richard,

    Nice site, great content.

    April 26, 2011 at 4:56 pm

  2. Anne Wood

    Your blog is a beautiful place. May I please share it with selected others?

    Anne Wood

    April 26, 2011 at 11:48 pm

  3. Debbie J.

    Well said, Richard. True art is more of an extension of yourself, not meant so much to IMpress but more to EXpress.It’s great work you do.Stay true to it and to yourself. I know you always have and will. Take care.

    August 4, 2011 at 3:39 am

  4. Linda Sioui

    Wow ! Very nice blog, my brother ! 🙂

    Linda (Awenda) Sioui

    October 3, 2011 at 1:00 am

  5. Kamila

    Everytime I visit your site, I am left a little bit speechless and in awe for extended periods of time. I feel honored to have met someone who connects me to this planet and the people on it, in new, deeply meaningful ways. I would elaborate, but I am a little bit speechless at the moment to say more :o)

    December 9, 2011 at 8:42 am

    • wow… Kamila…now you have left ME tripping on words!
      I appreciate your thoughts so much. tizhamenh!(thanks)

      December 9, 2011 at 3:21 pm

  6. As always, your work is stellar and does not require a band of experts to make it so. I have great respect for your stand on this issue. You are a person of great conviction and strength and it shows in your work and in your words. Tizhamenh indeed!

    February 27, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    • tizhameh Caitlin,

      Not sure many people understand my stance about “competition” in the art world.
      I’ve been asked to be a judge to jury several major events like SWAIA’s Santa Fe Indian Market and The Heard Museums annual Market
      but i have to decline…trying to explain the best i can, that giving honor and recognition to an unsuspecting artist is one thing,
      giving prizes to competitors for having better art work is very different. The first is more of a traditional way of giving honor for life achievement,
      the later is simply evaluating a particular piece of art as “higher quality” or “lower quality” and having little to do with an artists life.
      This drift towards celebritization instead of honoring individuals who emulate a deep quality of life is troubling to me.

      February 27, 2012 at 5:07 pm

      • Caitlin

        If only the principle about which you speak could be adopted not only by individuals but by nations as well. We, in the USA especially, have put competition before honor and before appreciation of intrinsic worth to the extent that we have lost much regard for the value of life itself. Thank you for being one of the voices of sanity and love. My heart feels fuller just being here with you and knowing you will continue in quiet strength.

        tizhameh, Sohahiyoh

        March 12, 2012 at 2:15 pm

      • I must express again, dear Richard, that I wish our whole society understood what you explain here. We have become so bound by competition in all its forms that we miss the true talent of those who quietly give of themselves in the living of their lives and in the fruits of their labor. Blessings for the growth of understanding that you express, my friend!

        May 31, 2012 at 9:08 pm

      • Sakoieta

        Kwah tsi tóske!! So true.

        February 16, 2013 at 6:51 pm

      • tižamęh Sakoieta,
        thanks for your comments!
        yeah, about the NDN on NDN aWARds… always amazes me why we’d even want to imitate the dominant culture!
        I’ll have to check out your site!

        February 16, 2013 at 8:25 pm

  7. tizhameh Caitlin,

    sure appreciate the quality of gratefulness you express. Its something i can learn from.
    all we can really attempt is to BE the kind of person we hope to see in others.
    the driving ideal of “perfection” is a trap…its simply illusory and fictitious.
    Chipping away at both any ornamental humility AND vanity in ourselves helps .
    “Winning” over someone else…always stokes the fires of egotism and vainglory.

    March 12, 2012 at 3:56 pm

  8. Caitlin

    You put it so well, Sohahiyoh. I love the phrase “ornamental humility.” It speaks volumes all by itself. Be well, he’eye’an!

    March 12, 2012 at 4:07 pm

  9. Richard, greetings to you and well met. I am so glad to see that you have pursued your vision and that it has been such a blessing to you. Today, Kathryn and I live in upstate New York. I am a writer, so far as I can be free from gainful employment, and Kathryn is an Episcopal priest. We do overlap with you to some extent culturally. One daughter in law is Withawis (Amber) from the Mohawk reservation nearby, and she is a blessing to our family.
    I am so delighted with pictures of your work. I would encourage you to continue, but I know you will. God’s peace be on you and on your household.

    May 27, 2012 at 11:42 am

    • wow…wonderful to hear from you. Its been ages! As a teen Kathryn was always so sweet shy and humble, I wish you and your family well!

      May 27, 2012 at 12:38 pm

  10. Anita Taylor

    Your thot: giving honor and recognition to an unsuspecting artist is one thing,
    giving prizes to competitors for having better art work is very different.
    I like that, a lot. I am toying with the idea of using those words in a section of the book that M. J. Hardman and I are just finishing. It is the section explaining her idea of derivational thinking in which we try to point out the many downsides of ranking and distinguish that from recognizing quality and “things” (ideas, people, objects, etc.) that we like and appreciate for what they are or do.
    We find it difficult to discuss like and different in ways that compare without ranking in a culture that seems to demand ranking. Your phrase shows one way to shed light on the idea.
    ANITA Taylor

    July 13, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    • tižamęh Anita,
      so well put! Though “ranking” was reserved for selecting war chiefs and leading war parties…it didn’t exist in the heart of village life where it was deeply matriarchal.
      If a chosen clan representative was not doing his duty, his position was simply revoked and someone else was put in his place.
      Seems the inherent competition theme behind SWAIA Indian Market has always been somewhat been controversial . There are a number of F.N. Peoples
      who agree that its NOT an indigenous model, and have a times voiced some concerns. BUT there are way too many who can’t imagine it any other way. Its almost become
      “traditional” to compete for ribbons and prizes now. Just as in Competition Pow-Wows, Indian rodeo, and NAMA (Native American Music Awards).
      In an attempt to achieve National recognition and prominence so often we’ve settled for creating an NDN equivalent of a colonialist model.
      Ranking and creating hierarchies might even have had roots in boarding schools where “obedient and submissive” Native students were given power over the resistant traditionalists.

      July 15, 2013 at 12:30 am

  11. Anita Taylor

    well put. as in most life situations, easy answers remain elusive. many shades of values contribute to both benefits and negatives.

    July 17, 2013 at 3:39 pm

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