Rewriting the Narrative: American Indian Artists in California, 1960-1980s

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A vibrant American Indian art scene developed in California from the 1960s to the 1980s, with links to a broader Indigenous arts movement. Native American artists working in the state produced and exhibited paintings, prints, sculptures, mixed media, and other art forms that validated and documented their cultures, interpreted their history, asserted their survival, and explored their experiences in modern society. Building on recent scholarship that examines American Indian migration, urbanization, and activism in the twentieth century, this article charts these developments and argues that American Indian artists in California challenged and rewrote dominant historical narratives by foregrounding Native American perspectives in their work.


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