Exceptional Native art recognized at Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival

Best of Show Award & Best of Division: Cultural Items
Dana Warrington (Prairie Band Potawatomi/ Menominee) for Family Traditions

Published June 30, 2017

More than $25,000 in prize money awarded to top artists; Dana Warrington wins Best of Show

INDIANAPOLIS — At the 25th annual Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival on June 24-25, judges awarded more than $25,000 in cash prizes and ribbons to Native American artists who entered their art works into competition. The Best of Show award went to Dana Warrington (Prairie Band Potawatomi/Menominee) for the beaded pipe bag, Family Traditions.

During the weekend, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art in downtown Indianapolis hosted more than 100 artists from 60 Native American tribes who showed their art, including jewelry, pottery, baskets, beadwork, prints and cultural items. Indian Market and Festival drew thousands of visitors who met the artists, purchased their art and enjoyed music, food and cultural experiences on museum grounds.

“Building support for today’s Native American artists and creating an opportunity for the artists and collectors to connect are central to the mission of the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival,” Eiteljorg President and CEO John Vanausdall said. “The beautiful and fascinating works the artists create make a tremendous impression on our market-goers and have contributed to the success of the Indian Market and Festival over its 25 years.”

Serving as judges of 10 art divisions were Todd Bordeaux (Sicangu Lakota), Ashley Holland (Cherokee) and Linley Logan (Tonawanda Seneca). They presented awards in Best of Show and other special categories. Warrington’s piece that won Best of Show,Family Traditions, is made from brain-tanned elk hide, hand-sorted dyed porcupine quills, beads, brass cones and hand-dyed deer tails. In other annual awards:

Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award & Best of Division: Basketry
Geo Neptune (Passamaquoddy) for Ceremony of the Singing Stars

·         The Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award is announced for art works the museum acquires during Indian Market and Festival to add to its permanent collection. This year, purchase awards went to Tyra Shackleford (Chickasaw) of Ada, Okla., for a finger-woven shawl titled The Lady, and to Geo Neptune (Passamaquoddy) of Princeton, Maine, for a black ash, sweet grass and birch bark basket titledCeremony of the Singing Stars.


·         The Helen Cox Kersting Award is given to an artist whose work exemplifies the highest quality of execution and innovation within a traditional Native art medium. This year the award goes to Abraham Begay (Navajo) of Flagstaff, Ariz., for his silver Bugle Necklace Inlaid, which features inlaid gemstones of many kinds.

·         The Margot L. Eccles Youth Award encourages the next generation of young artists and this year it was presented to Cypress Anderson (Navajo) of Montello, Wisc., for a necklace titled Jumping for Joy.

The 2017 Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival Best of Division award recipients are:

Paintings, Drawings, Prints, Photography
Gilmore Scott (Navajo), of Montezuma Creek, Utah, for Sky Dazzler

Walter Torres (Acoma Pueblo), of San Fidel, N.M., for Wiwiwi tsa

Kevin Horace (Hopi), of Phoenix, Ariz., for Hopi Butterfly Maiden

Abraham Begay (Navajo), of Flagstaff, Ariz., for Bugle Necklace Inlaid

Chase Kahwinhut Earles (Caddo), of Ada, Okla., for Deetumba Kahwis Horse Tripod

Geo Neptune (Passamaquoddy), of Princeton, Maine, for Ceremony of the Singing Stars

Weavings and Textiles
Tyra Shackleford (Chickasaw), of Ada, Okla., for The Lady

Cultural Items
Dana Warrington (Prairie Band Potawatomi/Menominee), of Cherokee, N.C., for Family Traditions

Katrina Mitten (Miami Tribe of Oklahoma), of Huntington, Ind., forFloral Bag/clasp purse

This year’s Indian Market and Festival signature piece is a corn basket, Piyaaassskomon: “Gaize” by Geo Neptune (Passamoquoddy) of Princeton, Maine.

A complete list of award recipients in all categories and prize sponsors is at this link.

Art works that are past winners of the Harrison Eiteljorg Purchase Award collected by the museum during previous Indian Markets are currently featured in an exhibit.  Indian Market and Festival: Celebrating Twenty-Five Years is open through July 30 in the museum’s Gerald and Dorit Paul Gallery. More information about the exhibit is here.

After a modest start in 1993, the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festivalhas grown into one of the top Native American art markets in the nation. Artists are chosen through a juried selection; and for artists to be eligible to participate, all entries must be handmade within the past two years by the artist entering the piece. Entries must be available for purchase during Indian Market and Festival and not include any part of a species of a protected animal. To ensure authenticity of artwork, all artists must provide documentation confirming they are members of a state or federally recognized tribe under the Indian Arts and Crafts Act.

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