Dyani White Hawk (Sičáŋǧu Lakota). “Carry II.” 2019. Walker Art Center: Gift of Russell Cowles, 2020

Dyani White Hawk: Bodies of Water


Dyani White Hawk (Sičáŋǧu Lakota) presents one new and two existing sculptural works from her Carry series. Each Carry piece, composed of a large copper bucket and ladle adorned with glass beads, bears extravagantly long fringe whose draping emulates arboreal root structures. Alongside the artist’s works, White Hawk selected historic Lakota belongings from the BMA’s collection. Through these works, White Hawk insists upon an interdependence between art and function—and by extension art and life—effectively calling into question art history’s tendency to devalue craft. These works operate as physical metaphors for the carrying of history, cosmology, generational teaching, and deep thought.

Preoccupied: Indigenizing the Museum is a wide-reaching project that proposes Indigenizing interventions to address and refuse the oppressive hierarchies of coloniality that pervade the realm of culture and serve as the underpinning of museums. The project encompasses community engagement, a series of nine monographic and thematic exhibitions, institutional interventions, public programs, and an untraditional catalog.


Curated by Leila Grothe, Associate Curator of Contemporary Art and Dare Turner (Yurok Tribe), Curator of Indigenous Art at the Brooklyn Museum, with support from Curatorial Research Assistant Elise Boulanger (Citizen of the O​sage Nation).

This project is generously supported by the Terra Foundation for American Art and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Additional support provided by the Eileen Harris Norton Foundation and The Robert Lehman Foundation.