- By Tamara Ikenberg
- Arts and Culture
Welcome to day six of Tribal Business News’ 12 days of Indigenous holiday gifts guide. In the spirit of supporting Indigenous artists and entrepreneurs and drawing attention to some truly gorgeous and inspired items, we are presenting 12 consecutive days of Native-made products perfect for holiday gift-giving, including giving to yourself.
Sayvketv (Stompdance) poster by Johnnie Diacon, $46, Johnnie Diacon Art
Janis Joplin or Jimi Hendrix would feel at home on one of Johnnie Diacon’s psychedelic 1960s-style concert posters.
But Diacon isn’t stuck at Woodstock. His takes on vintage posters play up performances in Mvskoke Nation.
“I’ve always been a fan of the 1960s concert posters,” Diacon said. “I used the word Sayvketv, which means stompdance in Mvskoke, as if it were the venue, and then I placed the names of the ceremonial grounds from around the Mvskoke Nation where these dances are held around the scene like they were band names. The center figure is a stompdance leader with a brush arbor in the background.”
Having a Diacon masterpiece on your wall puts you in some fine company. The Mvskoke master artist has pieces in museums including Tulsa’s Philbrook Museum and the Institute of American Indian Arts’ Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe. His painting “Everybody Dance: Green Corn Suite” also adorns the cover of Muscogee U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo’s collection “An American Sunrise.” In November, Diacon was commissioned to create a new mural commemorating the Trail of Tears for the Museum of Native American History in Bentonville, Ark.
Diacon strongly encourages shopping Indigenous in this year of canceled Native art shows and closed gift shops and galleries.
“It’s very important right now since a lot of our usual venues for selling our art have been lost to us because of the pandemic,” he said. “Buying original art, especially directly from the artist, not only helps us but our communities and our culture. It’s authentic. It’s from the heart.”
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