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Art Exhibit, Dakota Conference Examines Wounded Knee, 1973 and 1890

“Interpretations of Wounded Knee 1973 and 1890,” an exhibit commemorating the 40th anniversary of the occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973 will be on display in the Madsen/Nelson/Elmen Galleries of the Center for Western Studies’ Fantle Building March 5-May 26.

On Dec. 29, 1890, Miniconjou Lakota chief Spotted Elk (Big Foot) and some 300 of his followers were gunned down on the banks of Wounded Knee Creek. Eighty-three years later, 200 Oglala Lakota seized and occupied the town of Wounded Knee, S.D., for 71 days.

“Interpretations of Wounded Knee 1973 and 1890” is a one-time art show intended to recognize the impact of these two events in Northern Plains, Indian and American history.

Discussion on “History, Memory, and the Art of Wounded Knee,” Set for Wednesday, Feb. 22

Tim Hoheisel, director of Outreach and Promotion at the Center for Western Studies, will discuss “Interpretations of Wounded Knee 1973 and 1890” at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 22, at the Museum of Visual Materials. Jerry Fogg, Sioux Falls artist and participant in the 1973 Wounded Knee occupation, will join Hoheisel for the talk. The presentation is part of the Sioux Falls Arts Council “Grow a Scene” programming and is free and open to the public.

Works by 24 artists are on display including: Kevin Bierbaum, Sioux Falls; Randall Blaze, Buffalo Gap, S.D.; Stuart Brings Plenty, Sioux Falls; Lynn Burnette, Sr., Loveland, Colo.; Gerald Cournoyer, Kyle, S.D.; Russell Cournoyer, Sioux Falls; Rodger Ellingson, Sioux Falls; Jerry Fogg, Sioux Falls; Chris Francis, Madison, S.D.; Sharon Gray, Vermillion, S.D.; Bonnie Halsey-Dutton, Spearfish, S.D.; Terry Hecker, Lakeside, Calif.; Emil Her Many Horses, Washington, D.C.; Del Iron Cloud, Rapid City, S.D.; Glenn Krupka, Sioux Falls; Dennis Linn, Rapid City; Leah Maltbie, Hay Springs, Neb.; Alan Montgomery, Madison, S.D.; Donald F. Montileaux, Rapid City; Kevin Pouirer, Scenic, S.D.; Bruce Preheim, Vermillion, S.D.; Arthur Short Bull, Estes Park, Colo.; Margaret Sisley, Rapid City; and Asher Srednas, Sioux Falls .

The exhibit coincides with the 2012 Dakota Conference, the focus of which is Wounded Knee 1973, the 1890 massacre and other aspects of Northern Plains Indian history and culture. The Dakota Conference is set for April 27-28. Preliminary session speakers include Kevin McKiernan and Stew Magnuson.

McKiernan covered the 1973 Wounded Knee occupation for National Public Radio. He was the only reporter in the occupied village during the last six weeks of the confrontation. He later co-produced “The Spirit of Crazy Horse” for PBS’ “Frontline.” He is currently working on a new documentary called “Line in the Sand,” a “then and now” story that focuses on the legacy of the occupation.

McKiernan’s career as a journalist and filmmaker has taken him to some of the world’s most troubled regions, from Nicaragua to Iraq, from West Africa to Afghanistan. His work, nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, has been published by Time, Newsweek and The New York Times; and appeared on ABC, CBS, NBC and PBS.

Magnuson is the author of “The Death of Raymond Yellow Thunder.” After covering racial unrest in the remote northwest corner of his home state of Nebraska in 1999, Magnuson, a journalist, returned four years later to consider the border towns’ peoples, their paths, and the forces that separate them. Examining Raymond Yellow Thunder’s death at the hands of four white men in 1972, Magnuson looks deep into the past that gave rise to the tragedy. Situating long-ranging repercussions within 130 years of context, he also recounts the largely forgotten struggles of American Indian Movement activist Bob Yellow Bird and tells the story of Whiteclay, Nebraska, the controversial border hamlet that continues to sell millions of cans of beer per year to the “dry” reservation. Within this microcosm of cultural conflict, Magnuson explores the odds against the community’s power to transcend misunderstanding, alcoholism, prejudice, and violence.

A native of Omaha and a graduate of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Magnuson has traveled or lived in 45 countries, including the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, where he served in the Peace Corps, and Peshawar, Pakistan, where he worked with Afghan refugees in the late 1980s. He lives in Arlington, Va.

The Center for Western Studies is located in the Fantle Building at 2121 S. Summit Ave., Sioux Falls. Hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. - 2p.m. on Saturdays. Admission is free.

IMAGE ABOVE: "No Where to Run Only Die" by Donald F. Montileaux.
IMAGE RIGHT: "December 1890" by Donald F. Montileaux.