THIS SONG REMEMBERS: Self-Portraits of Native Americans in the Arts by Jane--Ed. Katz

THIS SONG REMEMBERS: Self-Portraits of Native Americans in the Arts

Email this review


Verbal self-portraits of 20 native American artists--mostly visual artists, but also writers and performing artists--with photos of the artists and some examples of their work, plus roundup reports on the different arts of different regions. The visual art ranges from the genuine spirit visions of Kenojuak and the primitive recollections of the old ways by her fellow Eskimo printmaker, Pitseolak, to more synthetic attempts to merge tribal traditions with modernism. (These often turn out looking rather like Sixties posters.) N. Scott Momoday is the most prominent writer represented; the highest strutter is Jamake Highwater, who says he is part Anpao (his own ""legendary"" hero), part Mick Jagger, a people not a person, and, when he writes, a conduit for the mysterious talent within him. Many of the artists, predominantly in their thirties, recall government attempts to stamp out their native culture and impose the prevailing one. Some became ""white,"" won graduate degrees, then returned to their cultures; others never really left. Their personal recollections are of topical interest; but alas, little of the art reproduced here can be considered alongside either mainstream American or traditional native American art.

Pub Date: Oct. 27th, 1981
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin