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Open to the public November 7, 2020
In the 1940s the United States military developed a specific policy to draft, recruit, and train American Indian speakers to become code talkers for WWII. Join us at the Mid-America All-Indian Museum to celebrate and remember the amazing sacrifices of these valiant men and women.
Away From Home
Date: September 1 - October 17, 2020
The Mid-America All-Indian Center Museum with a grant from the National Endowment of the Humanities is honored to bring to Wichita, KS,
Away From Home, a long standing exhibit from the Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ. The show examines an important and often unknown period of American history. Beginning in the 1870s the U.S. government aimed to assimilate American Indians into "civilized" society by placing them in government-operated boarding schools. Children were taken from families and transported to far-away schools where all signs of "Indian-ness" were stripped away. Students were trained for servitude and many went for years without familial contact - events that still have an impact on Native communities today, often with a complex and nuanced response.
Please join us for a closer look into the experience of the American Indian people and boarding schools.
The exhibit will remain on display from September 1 to October 17, 2020.
The American Indian Vote
Native peoples won citizenship in 1924, but the struggle for voting rights stretched on much longer and remains an issue today. Please join us at the Indian Museum in collaboration with the Wichita-Metro chapter of League of Women Voters for a Multi-Cultural Event open to the public and viewing of the exhibit!
Josh Johnico + Family
Josh Johnico is a relentless local artist with an extreme passion for painting. He has instilled that passion within his children too! Come check out what this brilliant family has to offer the art world!
People of the Ice and Snow
In collaboration with the Wichita Art Museum and one of America's premiere glass artists, Preston Singletary's exhibit, Raven and the Box of Daylight, the Mid-America All-Indian Museum sheds light on their extensive Alaskan art collection donated by the late Mildred Manty. Join us in celebrating the exquisitely rich and vibrant culture of Native Alaska!
American Indian Nativities
A display of nativities from the Mid-America All-Indian Center Museum's collection. Opens December 3rd to the public.
Life in Miniature
A display of dolls in Mid-America All-Indian Center Museum's collection.
From the Vault
An exhibit of curated works from the Mid-America All-Indian Center Museum's unique collection.
An exhibit of works by Kiowa-Creek artist, Micah Wesley. On exhibit until October 2019.
Wesley received his Master of Fine Arts in painting from The Weitzenhoffer School of Visual
Arts at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma and his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the
Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Wesley is an impressionist/Modernist
Native American painter with a focus on identity and references of experience. He is currently
residing in Norman, Oklahoma, where he paints and instructs various courses of art history for
the University of Central Oklahoma.
Objects of Cultural (Mis)appropriation
A gentle reminder that a culture is not a costume.
A display of newly acquired objects from the collection. Open to the public Saturday, Feb 23.
Opening date: December 1, 2018
Come celebrate the season with us and check out our American Indian inspired Christmas tree decorated with handmade ornaments.
Nov 8, 2018
An exhibit on Indigenous housing and objects from our collection that remind us of home.
Oct 4, 2018
Walk a Mile in Our Moccasins
An exhibit in accordance with Rock Your Mocs - a worldwide Native American & Indigenous Peoples movement held annually, and the remembrance of Trail of Tears, "Walk a Mile in Our Moccasins" is a retrospective show of MAAIC's outstanding moccasin collection.
Northeast Magnet art students answer the question, "What would the Keeper of the Plains look like if you were asked to create it?"
Apr 27, 2018
An art experience presented by individuals in the Envision Arts Program who are blind, visually impaired or multi-disabled.
Adorned in Silver
The original Native American silver smith, a Navajo, learned to work silver and iron, from Mexicans hired by a Trading Post owner in the late 19th Century. Modern jewelers still use many of these early methods. The adaptability of tribes, like the Navajos, who quickly learned from the Mexicans the art of the silver smith, brought the Native Americans to become the most productive, skilled turquoise artisans of the jewelry world. Their products serve as symbolic messengers of the Native American ideals and ways.
Our relationship to the earth through food culture surrounds many parts of our lives. Many American Indian traditions and rituals center on the gifts received from Mother Earth and the fruits of the land. This exhibit examines that relationship.
Earth is the final installment of our Elements exhibit series, featuring the medicine wheel, or circle of life. The medicine wheel encompasses all of the earth and the life within it. We will explore our relationship to the earth and its place in the medicine wheel.
Indians in the Arts
Many people are aware of traditional American Indian arts. What might be less commonly known, however, is that these art forms are expanding and adapting as our cultures expand and adapt. American Indians create art that honors their heritage and traditions, but combine that with their lived experiences as modern indigenous people. The art found in this exhibit takes a tiny fragment of some of the recent work being created by individuals and groups that can acquaint the public with the contemporary cultural traditions of talented and dedicated artists.
Patriot Nations: Native Americans in Our Nation's Armed Forces
Our latest traveling exhibition form the National Museum of the American Indian is a 16-panel exhibiton that tells the remarkable history of the brave American Indian and Alaska Native men and women who have served in the United States military dating back to the Revolutionary War. This exhibit will be open until September 16, 2017 and military and their families are welcome to visit our entire museum during this time as part of the Blue Star Museums program.
Patriot Nations: Native Americans in our Nation’s Armed Forces is produced by the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. The exhibition was made possible by the generous support of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.
Photo caption: The Native American Women Warriors lead the grand entry during a powwow in Pueblo, Colorado, June 14, 2014. From left: Sergeant First Class Mitchelene BigMan (Apsáalooke [Crow]/Hidatsa), Sergeant Lisa Marshall (Cheyenne River Sioux), Specialist Krissy Quinones (Apsáalooke [Crow]), and Captain Calley Cloud (Apsáalooke [Crow]), with Tia Cyrus (Apsáalooke [Crow]) behind them.
Photo by Nicole Tung
Zuni Fetishes and Carvings
Fetishes are objects that are filled with the spirits of powerful beings. Zuni people carve stone animals to heal and help the person who has it. Learn about Zuni fetishes and the carvings that are made to resemble them.
Pottery: Formed and Fired
Pueblo pottery is as varied as the pueblos in which it is created. The Indian Center has 150 pieces from 17 pueblos that showcase the artistry that goes into the making of this art.
The Ken Enquist Collection
Although the photographic portrayal of American Indians is not unique, this exhibit differs from other representations in several respects. Historic portraits of Indians often presented them in the artificial environment of the studio, frequently having to wear the regalia of a tribe to which they did not belong. Unlike the posed Indians in historic portraits, the individuals portrayed in the current exhibit chose what they would wear, where they would pose, and they tell their story through the accompanying narratives, in which they express what it is like to be an Indian in Kansas today.
The underlying purpose of this exhibit is to sweep away the misconceptions, biases, and ignorance that sometimes obscure our understanding of one another. The picturing of Indian people as real individuals, with unique histories, experiences, feelings, and traditions is the best way to dispel some of these long held and unquestioned judgements. In essence, this exhibit contains the self-portraits of American Indians who speak their own story at a moment in time. The images and words seen here should be considered the representations of living people who are forever changing.
Water is the third installment starting the second year of our Elements exhibit series, featuring the medicine wheel, or circle of life. The medicine wheel encompasses all of the earth and the life within it. We will explore our relationship to water and its place in the medicine wheel.
Cherokee Baskets: Redfern & Bushyhead
Margaret Redfern Pitzer was a master artist in basket weaving and she taught that skill to Marilyn Bushyhead Kindsvatter. Their baskets showcase Cherokee artistry at its finest, while also focusing on the lives and talents of two women helping to keep heritage craft alive.
Indians in Sports
This exhibit is a look at American Indians who have contributed to the world of sports. Take a journey from traditional sports played and invented by American Indians to learning about the effect boarding schools had on Indian athletics, bringing us to today and athletes who are up and coming in different fields of sports.
It is the second of a four-part series featuring all four elements of the medicine wheel, or circle of life, changing biannually. The medicine wheel encompasses all of the earth and the life within it. We will explore the benefits fire provides for our culture and also the dangers it poses.
Kachina: We Are the Spirit
Kachina (or Katsina) dolls are physical representations of the kachina spirits, messengers between the human and spirit world. These dolls were originally made by Hopi people to instruct young people about spiritual beings, though now they are made by many southwest tribes for the tourist industry. Examples from our collection will illustrate the types of kachina dolls and highlight their purpose and significance to the Hopi and other people.
Elements is a two-year exhibit series featuring all four elements of the medicine wheel, or circle of life, changing biannually. Air is the first element featured and symbolizes new life.
Turquoise is a stone ever-present in the southwest. Its use in jewelry stretches back to ancient cultures and continues to attract people of all backgrounds. Turquoise is not only beautiful, but also has cultural significance to the American Indians who adorn themselves in the blue-green gem. This exhibit will also show examples of turquoise and silver jewelry, along with turquoise used in other forms, such as animal fetishes.
Alaska: People of the Ice and Snow
There are 566 federally recognized tribes. Almost half of those are Alaksa Natives. With over 200 communities, there are as many different art styles. From ivory carvings to intricate dolls, Alaska Native art is as varied and unique as the people who create it. Discover the practical uses for artwork in northern cultures. Explore the techniques that characterize totems, paddles, and masks. Come learn about the people of the ice and snow!
Gentle Harvest: Every Sheep Gets a Haircut
"Gentle Harvest: Every Sheep Gets a Haircut" gives a playful look at the history of weaving and its traditions in American Indian culture told from the perspective of a sheep. This exhibit was designed to appeal especially to children.
There are two themed sections: "Getting to the Bottom of the Basket" and "The Flock Talks". A dozen Navajo rugs and baskets from more than 10 different tribes will be featured as well as a faux sheep covered in real wool and a traditional vertical loom. Many items from the Indian Center's collection as well as hands-on materials illustrate how American Indians gently harvest plants and wool - without harming the environment or animal - to create woven goods.
The Art of Creating Sacred
"The Art of Creating Sacred" exhibit features ceremonial pipes and pipe bags made between 1870-1900 that are part of the Indian Center's permanent artifact collection. The display focuses on the technique of making pipes and pipe bags, and provides a detailed explanation as to why pipes are held sacred within the American Indian community.
Carry Our Prayers to Heaven
The exhibit features bird feathers and featured objects from the mid-1800s to 1900s that continue to be held sacred by indigenous cultures around the world. All pieces are part of the Indian Center's permanent collection.
Display of bird feathers (eagle, hawk, turkey, goose, pheasant) along with headdresses and fans made with feathers. The Museum worked with Sedgwick County Zoo Curator of Birds Scott Newland to identify the origins of many of the well-preserved feathers in its collection. It was discovered that some were from exotic birds such as blue and gold macaws. To add an interactive component to the exhibit, visitors will be encouraged to learn more about the birds in their natural environment at such places as the Sedgwick County Zoo.
- Feather Learning Station where visitors can view microscopic images of feathers, learn the science of feathers and flight and discover the importance of birds in nature. The station was created with assistance from the Sedgwick County Zoo and professors in the Ask a Biologist program, which was started by the Arizona State University School of Life Sciences.
- Golden Eagle photographs taken by nature photographer Bob Gress.
- Film interview with local Cherokee Elder Bob Marley that gives the history of the Eagle feather giveaway program he established more than 20 years ago to reward American Indian youth for their accomplishments.