WARM SPRINGS, Ore. — Five Warm Springs tribal citizens whose knowledge and commitment to perpetuating the culture are at the core of The Museum at Warm Springs’ mission and its legacy for future generations have been honored as Living Treasures. The honoring ceremony took place at The Museum on Saturday, October 27, the last day of the three-day Treaty Conference. The Conference focused on the 1855 Treaty and the establishment of The Museum in 1993 as important actions of inherent sovereignty.
The Museum at Warm Springs Board of Directors designated a special committee to nominate and select by consensus the five Living Treasures. Each recipient received a monetary award and will present a public program at the Museum during the coming year.
“Many aspects of Warm Springs cultures are most effectively taught and passed down by working directly with those special tribal members, who are considered the living memory of The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs,” said Museum Executive Director Carol Leone. “Language, dance, canoe culture, storytelling, basket weaving, regalia making, fishing, food gathering and ceremonies encompass some of the activities that continue to be passed down and perpetuated through their teaching.”
The Living Treasures
An accomplished artist, Redine Billy graduated from the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She was chosen as a Living Treasure because of her beautiful beadwork and her knowledge of making regalia. She has made dresses and beadwork for many of her grandchildren, nieces, nephews and others who have wanted to participate in social dancing or powwow dancing. Billy’s jingle dresses are sought after by many in the Northwest.
Geraldine Jim is a former member of the Accessions Committee at The Museum at Warm Springs. As a member of the Committee she helped select cultural treasures, artifacts and tribal member heirlooms for The Museum’s permanent collection. She helped build The Museum’s collection of exquisite items. Jim was selected because she is a Master Artist in her beadworking and craftsmanship. She also is valued as an elder with her traditional knowledge and stories.
Foster Kalama “Ku-Na”
Foster Kalama was chosen as a Living Treasure because of his artistry and musicianship. He is a graphic artist who produces beautiful artwork. He also is an accomplished flautist and is sought after to play his flute at many functions. Kalama has taught many students to play the flute, he’s given talks at schools, and has traveled to Germany. Kalama also is knowledgeable in traditional ways and has been a fisherman and hunter throughout his life.