Postponed Smithsonian exhibit spotlights Native photojournalists

Genízaro Delvin Garcia standing in the remains of 18th century Santa Rosa de Lima Church in Abiquiú, New Mexico. Photo by Russel Albert Daniels, 2019.

WASHINGTON — A new exhibition series highlighting the striking work of Native photojournalists Russel Albert Daniels and Tailyr Irvine was set to open today at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. 

Amidst COVID-19 concerns, it’s been postponed.

The series, in part, sheds light on Indigenous people and important stories that are, as the photographers contend, overlooked by the media.

Once the museum re-opens, the exhibit, “Developing Stories: Native Photographers in the Field,” will be on display at both of the museum’s locations, New York City and Washington, D.C. The show was curated by Cécile Ganteaume.

Tiana Antoine and Nathan Drennan relax with their niece ath Flathead Indian Reservation in Montana. 2019. Photo by Tailyr Irvine.

The first set of images, initially set to open today, is “The Genízaro People of Abiquiú,” a photo essay featuring the work of Russel Albert Daniels (Diné descent and Ho-Chunk descent). According to a release, in the series of captivating photographs, “Daniels explores the historical complexities shaping a 266-year-old community’s sense of self. This Indigenous/Hispanic community’s genesis lies in violence, slavery, and survival.”

Meanwhile, Tailyr Irvine’s photo essay will be on view in Washington and New York July 14–Oct. 18 (as of now, please check their website for updates). 

Irvine is a Salish and Kootenai photojournalist based in Montana and Florida. She was born and raised on the Flathead Reservation in Montana where she noticed a lack of meaningful media coverage in her community. According to a release, “Irvine’s photography focuses on telling stories from Indigenous communities that highlight the complex and diverse Native experience.”

To see and read about their photos, click here.

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