Officially designated in 1990, National American Indian Heritage Month is a celebration of the various tribal cultures of the United States. It aims to educate the general public about the history, traditions, and art of the Native American Indian peoples. Throughout the month of November, there will be several events dedicated to raising awareness about this fascinating aspect of American cultural richness.
1)Cultural Maintenance: The UCSB Women’s Center presents the work of Native Californian Tongva/Achamem artist and tribal activist L. Frank from November 1 through January 15, with an opening on November 1, from 4-7 p.m., in the Women’s Center Gallery. It’s part of a two-day Women’s Gathering hosted by the organization in the Student Resource Center to celebrate American Indian Heritage Month. Call 893-3778.
2)California Indian Festival: On Saturday, November 10, from 11 a.m.- 4 p.m., the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History hosts the second annual California Indian Festival. With Native American music, dancing, and food along with children’s activities, the festival promises to be both enjoyable and educational. See sbnature.org or call 682-4711.
3)Romancing the Indian: The renowned photography of Edward S. Curtis will be on display at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History from now until April 2008. In 1906, Curtis began a long study to document and photograph the Indian tribes of the United States. Controversial and evocative, his work is an invaluable record of the lives of the Native Americans at the turn of the century.
4)Vince Chafin: This Santa Barbara musician will be playing his New Age and traditional Native American flute music at the Santa Barbara Songwriter Showcase on Thursday, November 15, at 3 p.m. See vincechafin.com.
5)Mitchell Robles: This Santa Barbara native of Chumash descent makes colorful contemporary Native American art that mixes his cultural heritage with the landscape of the American West. See mitchrobles.com.