Saturday, September 18, 2004
Edward Curtis devoted his life to photographing American Indians. He took nearly 40,000 images in the early years of the 20th century. Curtis’ camera captured the Native people as he saw them: brave, stoic, beautiful — living monuments to America’s past. But the images he created are sometimes deceptive, because Curtis often staged them, asking his subjects to wear a particular blanket he liked or pose in a certain way. To inaugurate Studio 360’s series on American Icons, Peggy Berryhill talked with Native scholars and artists about Curtis’s images and their complicated legacy.