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date: 19 February 2020

Smith, Jaune Quick-to-see [‘Insightful Awareness’]locked

(b St Ignatius, Flathead Reservation, MT, 1940).
  • Frederick J. Dockstader

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[‘Insightful Awareness’]

(b St Ignatius, Flathead Reservation, MT, 1940).

Native American Cree–Métis–Shoshoni painter and printmaker. Her name comes from her Shoshoni grandmother. She took the Famous American Art Course in high school, then eventually earned an AA degree at Olympic College, Bremerton, WA; a BA degree at Framingham State College, MA; and an MFA degree at the University of New Mexico. Her paintings include work in nearly every medium, but she favours oil and acrylic. Although her Indian identity is central to her art, works like Tree of Life (1987; Jersey City, NJ, Mus.) reveal a modernist identity as well. She was heavily influenced by the formal innovations of artists ranging from Joan Miró, Paul Klee, and Vasily Kandinsky to Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, and Jasper Johns. Her work, which she termed ‘nomad art’, varies tremendously in both quality and subject matter, but there is no doubt that from the 1980s she has been one of the most influential figures of Native North American art. She has curated dozens of exhibits featuring Native American artists, exhibited widely and enjoyed national recognition. An articulate speaker, she has been an outspoken activist for feminist, human rights, and environmental causes, and her art reflects these concerns, as in ...

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