Craft in America


Nicholas Galanin on "What Have We Become?"

Artist Nicholas Galanin on his work, What Have We Become? Bonus video from the STORYTELLERS episode.

AIRED: December 11, 2020 | 0:01:18

What Have We Become looks at anthropology and the homogenization of

our knowledge and our elders knowledge, through archeology and anthropology.

Often times, that anthropology is written by folks that are not from our communities.

That's not always a problem, but it becomes a problem what that's the only

perspective and narrative that's ever fed to us.

A Three Part Smithsonian Series is the text that I first started working with,

Which was published in the seventies. It's an anthropological text that comes from an

era of where our communities were heavily romanticized and upheld as

this is authenticity, this is not.

I use my image on some of them, not all of them

but my face, which is a form of identity for myself

and there are thousands and thousands of pages hand cut

and then rebound into books

It is a look at not only how that shapes identity and stereotype

of the larger community; how it controls history, how it feeds

certain narratives, but also what it lacks.


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