Powwow And Exhibit At UNH Feature Contemporary
Native American Art From New England

Contact: Erika Mantz
UNH Media Relations

Sept. 20, 2005

DURHAM, N.H. -- The University of New Hampshire Museum in Dimond Library will host an exhibit, “We’re Still Here: Contemporary Native American Art from New England,” beginning Sept. 24, 2005. The exhibit highlights the work of artisans participating in a Powwow on the campus Sept. 24 and 25, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days in the field at the corner of Mast Road and Spinney Lane, on the west end of campus.

The Powwow is sponsored by the UNH Parents Association, the UNH Native American Cultural Association, Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, the Office of the Vice President for Student and Academic Services, and the offices of the provost and the chancellor. A tie to the past that helps maintain Native American heritage, the Powwow is a spiritual tradition and a time for Indian families to gather with friends. Both the Powwow and the exhibit are free and open to the public

Professor Siobhan Senier, program coordinator for the American Studies program at UNH, and Dale Valena, curator of the UNH Museum, said the long-term goal of the student-run and student-organized Powwow and museum exhibit is to create a league of indigenous New England artisans and help remind people that Native American are still in New England, still active and still modernizing. Although there are no federally recognized tribes in New Hampshire or Vermont, the area has traditionally been home to the Abenaki.

The Powwow will feature dance competitions, an explanation of the regalia in the Grand Entry, food, and Native American artisans demonstrating pottery, basket making and flute making.

“Powwows are for the public,” Senier said. “They are a chance for Native American people to get together and teach others about their traditions. Education is so important, because many people think Indians are gone from the state.”

The exhibit, which runs until Dec. 22, 2005, will feature the work of regional artists with an array of different pieces made with traditional methods and various traditional and contemporary materials, meant to emphasize the Native American connection to the land. The museum exhibit will open at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 24, after the conclusion of the Powwow.

For further information on the Powwow, contact Siobhan Senier, American Studies Program coordinator, at ssenier@unh.edu or (603) 862-2466. For further information on the UNH Museum exhibit, contact Dale Valena, curator, dvalena@cisunix.unh.edu or (603) 862-1081.