Refined Design: Aesthetics & Details in Plains Art


August 2018 Exhibition

Opening Reception:
Saturday, August 11, 2018

This show highlighted the more nuanced aspects of design elements and subtle details for which Plains artists are so renowned.

More than the object type, age or area, we looked closely at specific design elements, including:

Composition - design, shapes, use of color, and color relationships, contrasting and complementary colors, balance & symmetry

“The Drip Factor”- details, fringe, suspensions, attachments, “Bells and whistles” if you will. The additional treatments, movement and sound created by additions of tin cones etc.

Craftsmanship - the mastery of the artist, tightness of beading, and the many techniques employed on a single object- edge beading, woven beading, flat stitch, lazy stitch, etc.

Materials - hides, porcupine quill, trade goods including glass beads, tin cones, German silver etc. The diverse resources acquired through trade both inter-tribal and Euro-American.

Overall aesthetics- how all the elements work together to create unforgettable works of art, “dissecting the parts in order to fully appreciate the whole.”

Possible Bag, Central Plains, c. 1880

Exhibition Highlights:

Show Announcement: