For #NativeAmericanHeritageDay, it seemed a most appropriate choice to feature this celebratory work by Marcus Amerman (American and Choctaw, b.1959), titled, The Gathering (1997). In this completely beaded panel, the artist has depicted a group of Native American riders, bedecked in their finery, including feather headdresses and beaded horse gear, standing proudly against a Portland cityscape. It is an idyllic, brilliant sunny day with Mount Hood’s snowcapped peak gleaming in the distance and the distinctive buildings in Portland’s downtown neighborhood rising in the middle distance. Although Amerman was inspired by a historic photograph of Nez Perce Chiefs on the Umatilla reservation, the work is a tribute to the continued presence and vitality of all of the Native people of Oregon.
—Kathleen Ash-Milby, Curator of Native American Art
Marcus Amerman (American and Choctaw, born 1959). The Gathering, 1997. Glass beads on cotton cloth. Museum Purchase: Caroline Ladd Pratt Fund, 1999.7 © artist or other rights holder.