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  • “The next rug… Please!”

    by Robert Tate, Eiteljorg director of merchandising | Oct 07, 2013



    “The next rug… Please!”

    That was the phrase heard over 200 times on Saturday, Oct. 5 during the Eiteljorg’s live Navajo Rug Auction. 

    Potential bidders arrived early to preview the rugs and learn stories behind some of the weavers who created them. As an added bonus, fourth generation rug trader, Shari Burnham, shared Navajo rug knowledge with our guests. Also, attendees got to see and feel the rugs as they were readied for auction.

    Before the auction began several people brought rugs to be reviewed for possible consignment. One spectacular Etta Peacock rug, presented from an Indiana couple, was selected for the day’s auction.  The original price was $12,000.  But the couple was OK with parting with it for a reserve price of $5,000.  

    With only five rugs left the beautiful Etta Peacock was brought to the floor.  The rug’s story was told and the bid calling began at $5,000. Immediately, several paddles started flying up into the air of the Eiteljorg’s Clowes Court. And, this race that could only have one winner was on!  The auctioneer passed $7,000, then $8,000, then $9,000 – and the attendees were still waving their hands. But by the time he hit $10,000, the lone passionate bidder – Number 25 in fifth row – was the only one holding up her right hand. Number 25 had won the war!

    In the end, three people were made very happy after that bid: the couple that sold it and the smiling, satisfied buyer!

    In all, 50 registered bidders bought 72 rugs for a total of $61,000. Proceeds from the auction go to R.B. Burnham, the rug weavers and the Eiteljorg.

    Robert Tate
    Eiteljorg director of merchandising
    (pictured left)

    Go comment!




  • Eiteljorg Insider | 5 Questions with Navajo Rug Auctioneer Sherri Burnham

    by Jaq Nigg, Eiteljorg Festivals and Markets Manager | Oct 04, 2013

    As the general manager of her family business, RB Burnham & Co Trading, Sherri manages the daily operations in the Sanders, AZ trading post as well as all of the 15-17 auctions they produce and conduct, including the Navajo Rug Auction at the Eiteljorg on Oct. 5. She is the fifth generation in her family to work in the business of trading among the Navajo people, and has been doing it for over 17 years. As a Navajo, it is important to Sherri to do what she can to help maintain and preserve cultural traditions.

    If you could invite any artist to dinner, who would it be and why?

    I would love to spend an evening with the late artist RC Gorman. Not only is his art iconic in the southwest, he was also quite a charismatic character. I've heard many stories about him and would loved to have shared a meal with him and his entourage just to learn more about what inspired him.

    How do you spend most of your time?
    While not at work or on the road chasing auctions, I spend most of my time gardening and in the kitchen.

    What book are you reading right now?
    I just finished The Painted Drum, by Louise Erdrich. I am currently trying to read all of her works and am about half way through the list.

    If you had to evacuate your house immediately, what is the one thing you would grab?
    I think I would take as many photo albums as I could, granted that my family was safely out as well. My family home burned down when I was a child and somehow my parents saved our family albums and that seemed most important then and now.

    What sound do you love?
    I love being in the forest listening to birds chirp and the wind rustle the tree branches.
     


    NAVAJO RUG AUCTION THIS SATURDAY, OCT. 5.
    Browse and bid on more than 200 vintage and contemporary weavings during this year’s auction, presented by R.B. Burnham & Co. Prices ranges from $100 to $10,000.

    IF YOU GO:
    Members only preview 
    8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
    Opens to the public      
    9:30 a.m. 
    Auction begins                        
    11:30 a.m.

    Go comment!




  • Buckaroo Bash, Navajo Rug Auction and Botanical Architecture Workshop | October at the Eiteljorg

    by User Not Found | Oct 02, 2013

    Here's a look at what we're doing this month at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art.

    Quest for the West® Art Show and Sale
    Through Oct. 6
    See paintings, drawings and sculptures from 50 of the world’s most celebrated Western artists. Many of the pieces on exhibit are still for sale at the Eiteljorg. A portion of Quest proceeds helps the Eiteljorg build its world-class collection. 

    Craig Tennant, Staying Close, 2013
    Oil on linen, 14X20 inches
    $7,500
    Still for sale during Quest for the West

    Storytelling
    Saturdays
    OCT. 5, 12, 19, 26
    1 p.m.
    Meet Teresa Webb (Anishinaabe) and hear about Native American cultures through stories and songs, accompanied by flute, drum and rattle.

    Navajo Rug Auction
    Saturday
    OCT. 5
    Members only preview 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
    Public viewing 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m.
    Auction - 11:30 a.m.

    Browse and bid on more than 200 vintage and contemporary weavings during this year’s auction, presented by R.B. Burnham & Co. Prices ranges from $100 to $10,000.

     
    Inuit Art Trunk Show
    Saturday
    OCT. 12 and 13

    Members shop 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.
    General public shops 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
    Get your questions answered about Inuit art by the owners of Iqaluit Fine Arts Studio. Located in the capital of Nunavut Territory in Canada, this gallery has a wide selection of Inuit paintings, tapestries, sculptures and jewelry. For one day only, the owners of this incredible gallery will sell their artwork at the Eiteljorg. Prices range from $50 to $20,000.

    Botanical Architecture Workshop
    Saturday
    OCT. 12

    9 a.m. – Noon
    Price: $15 for non-members and $10 for members – includes discounted admission to the museum
     Bring your imagination to this Eiteljorg workshop and create your very own replica building to take home. Bits of natural materials, such as pods, tendrils, twigs, nuts, and moss will be used. Fee includes materials and instruction; pre-register and pre-pay by calling (317) 275-1310 by Oct. 4. Workshop is designed for adults but suitable for ages 12 and older. Participants will be using a hot glue gun and cutting tools.

    Artist in Residence: Norris Chee (Dineh)
    Saturdays
    OCT. 19 & 26
    1 p.m. – 4 p.m.  
    Meet award-winning painter Norris Chee (Dineh) and watch as he demonstrates his art-making techniques.

    Buckaroo Bash: Carats, Corsets & Cowboys
    Friday
    OCT. 25
    Start preparing your finest jewels and corseted saloon wear for a night of daring elegance! The museum’s annual fundraising event for Eiteljorg education programming returns to the museum for its 16th year. Attendees will be entertained by the Endless Summer Band, and enjoy innovative and delicious food from Harrison College’s Chef’s Academy pastry students and Kahn’s Catering. Plus, attendees will get to participate in both live and silent auctions, a wine pull and the chance to purchase raffle tickets for a piece of fine jewelry from G. Thrapp Jewelers. Tickets can be purchased online www.Eiteljorg.org.

    Day of the Dead
    Saturday
    OCT. 26
    11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    The Mexican holiday of Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos) is a time to remember and honor deceased loved ones. Experience Día de Muertos at the Eiteljorg. See traditional papel picado, the cut paper decorations hung for Hispanic celebrations and get ideas for your own memorial by seeing the elements on the museum’s community ofrenda (offering place). Watch performances by Anderson Ballet Folklorico and Comparsa Tlahuicas. Meet artists in residence, Beatriz Schlebecker and Richard Gabriel Jr., and create your own papel picado and tin ornament to take home.

    Go comment!




  • Eiteljorg Insider | Five Questions with TWO SPIRITS director Lydia Nibley

    by Jaq Nigg, Eiteljorg festivals and events manager | Sep 25, 2013


    Two Spirits director Lydia Nibley

    Lydia Nibley's Two Spirits is the powerful documentary that tells the story of Fred Martinez – a Navajo boy who was beaten to death because his killer believed he was gay. Martinez actually considered himself “Two-Spirit,” or “nadleehi” – a Navajo term for a male-bodied person with a feminine essence.

    At 12:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 28,  Two Spirits will be screened at the Eiteljorg. The film explores the bullying and violence commonly faced by LGBT people, and the epidemic of LGBT teen suicide. It also reveals the range of gender expression long seen as a healthy part of many of the indigenous cultures of North America.

    Lydia will join an expert panel this Saturday, at the museum, to discuss her award-winning film. But we wanted Eiteljorg visitors to learn a little more about our honored guest before she arrives.

    What is your favorite piece of artwork at the Eiteljorg?
    I feel drawn to historic artifacts that connect me to the people who came before—clothing and objects that were used every day.

    What inspires you?
    Finding stories to tell that can make a difference by opening hearts and minds to a new perspective.

    If you could spend an afternoon with anyone, living or dead, who would it be?
    With my film Two Spirits in mind, Hastiin Klah, 1867-1937, the great Navajo medicine person, sandpainter and weaver who was third-gender. It would be fascinating to spend an afternoon in his company.  

    What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
    Patti Smith, who provided music for Two Spirits says, “It’s the artist’s responsibility to balance mystical communication and the labor of creation.” I love that.

     What is one of your favorite quotes?
    “Work is love made visible.” – Kahlil Gibran

    What should we ask you that you want us to know about?
    Will you ask me what’s next for Two Spirits? Thanks for asking! We’re working hard (with mixed success) to make the case to philanthropists and foundations that the film needs to be available in more colleges, universities, high schools and libraries nationwide. We get such great reports about the impact of the film—suicide prevention, anti-bullying, deepening the conversation around sexuality and gender in ways that make a difference now and in the future. We’re just going to keep asking for support and hoping…and asking.

    For more information about Two Spirits, visit www.twospirits.org

    HOW YOU CAN HELP FUND TWO SPIRITS

    The museum is asking for the community's support through the Power2Give project -which empowers you to give directly to local arts projects you are passionate about. It will cost $4,900 to bring the Two Spirits presentation to the Eiteljorg. Chase Bank is matching the dollars - but if we don't raise the full amount, the matching money goes away.

    As of Sept. 26, the Eiteljorg needs $1,635 to fully fund this LGBT program.  Any dollar amount helps.

    Go comment!




  • Bid on High-End Navajo Rugs, Oct. 5, at the Eiteljorg

    by Robert Tate, Eiteljorg director of merchandising | Sep 24, 2013

    On Saturday, Oct. 5, Eiteljorg members and visitors can raise their hands to bid on more than 200 Navajo rugs during the museum's annual auction. This year, Trader and auctioneer Bruce Burnham has honored our invitation to share his love and knowledge about contemporary and vintage Navajo rugs.
     
    Burnham’s family has been in the trading business for five generations, which makes him uniquely qualified to answer questions about collecting and displaying Navajo rugs and weavings. 

    The Burnham’s Trading Post is some 40 miles west of Gallup, New Mexico in Northeastern Arizona. Each year, they sell more than $1 million in rugs at 18 auctions. Proceeds from each sale go directly to the Navajo artists who created the rugs or weavings.  The artists gather at the trading post when he returns from auctions to collect their earnings. 

    Burnham, himself, lives on the Navajo reservation where his family has been trading rugs for more than 30 years. When asked recently whether he thought rug weaving was a dying art, he told the Arizona Daily Courier, “It’s not a dying art. There has never been a time you couldn’t open the back of a store and haul out more rugs than you can sell.”

    The Eiteljorg is privileged to have such a special relationship with the Burnham family.  According to their website, the Burnhams are credited with helping to develop several distinct rug styles including the New Lands Raised Outline, Burntwater, Germantown Revival and Spider Rock. Bruce Burnham is known nationwide for his expertise in buying and selling and his company’s innovation and quality in Navajo textiles. You can get a sense of what the Burnhams will bring to Indianapolis for auction if you visit their website at www.rbburnhamtrading.com

    We believe this auction is the perfect opportunity for visitors to add to their collection or for new collectors to purchase a first rug or weaving. Those who attend the preview also have the benefit of holding rugs in their hands and examining them up close. The "Members-only" preview is also a great cultural experience which gives visitors an opportunity to learn about Navajo art.  

    Rugs sold at the event will range from $100 to $10,000. The average rug will sell for $350.

    If you’d like to see and feel one of the rugs that will be on display, make a trip to the Eiteljorg Museum Store where we have a 4X6 contemporary rug from R.B. Burnham & Co. on display.

    Schedule:
    8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
    Navajo Trader and auctioneer Bruce Burnham leads “Members only” chat 
    *Eiteljorg members only

    9:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
    General public arrives for auction preview

    11:30 a.m. – Navajo rug auction begins

    Go comment!
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