This installment of Curtis photogravures in the Museum’s Falb Family Gallery featured 37 images of American Indian decorative arts. Accompanying the images were 9 works of rare Native American basketry and pottery from the private collection of Dubuque collector Mary Ellyn Jensen.
Edward S. Curtis spent more than 30 years of his life photographing over 80 North American Indian tribes west of the Mississippi. The arts in Native American life were extensively recorded by Curtis including stories, music, and images of decorative objects. In the texts that were part of The North American Indian collection, he recorded volume after volume of myths and legends. Musical compositions were written down for posterity. The skill and craftsmanship displayed in ceremonial and everyday objects were richly preserved in thousands of images.
The North American Indian collection came to the Dubuque Museum of Art’s permanent collection in 2009 thanks to the efforts of the Dubuque Cultural Preservation Committee.