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Frieze Viewing Room 2021
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Colour pencil Lakota Ledger Drawing of a herd of horses | Donald Ellis Gallery

Frieze Viewing Room 2021

Fast Ponies and War Bonnets: A Lakota Look at Ledger Art

May 5–14, 2021

Frieze Viewing Room


Donald Ellis Gallery is pleased to announce its participation in Frieze Viewing Room 2021, live May 5-14, 2022.

How does a Lakota artist read Lakota Ledger Drawings that are 120 years old and how can these drawings inform contemporary life?

Fast Ponies and War Bonnets: A Lakota Look at Ledger Art is a curated exhibition of 19th century Lakota Ledger Art by critically acclaimed artist, filmmaker and photographer Dana Claxton. Ledger Drawings represent first person narratives of war, love and the everyday at a time when Indigenous sovereignty was increasingly challenged by American imperialist expansion. The exhibition explores how a contemporary Hunkpapa Lakota artist relates to an Indigenous telling of their current reality as rendered with their own hands on sheets of ledger paper acquired from Euro-Americans. Existing between art, documentation, cultural aesthetics and storytelling, Ledger Drawings ’provide the line and the vision of the line to carry historical narratives and cultural aesthetics into the present.’

To read Ms Claxton’s full curatorial inquiry and view the complete exhibition please visit Fast Ponies and War Bonnets: A Lakota Look at Ledger Art.

Donald Ellis Gallery will donate 10% of all sales made during this exhibition to Cairns, The Center of American Indian Research and Native Studies, as chosen by Ms. Claxton.

Ms. Claxton and Donald Ellis will host a virtual walk-through and panel discussion of the exhibition on May 7, 2021, at 2pm EST.

Highlights of the Exhibition

Ledger Drawing P4349

Ledger Drawing

possibly Tatanka Yotanka (Sitting Bull, 1831-1890)
Hunkpapa Lakota
Northern Plains
ca. 1890
Inventory # P4349
Ledger Drawing P4394-43

Ledger Drawing

anonymous artist
Goodwyn Ledger Book
Lakota
Wood Mountain, Saskatchewan
ca. 1880
Inventory # P4394-43
Ledger Drawing P4188a

Ledger Drawing

attributed to Wanbli Hito (Roan Eagle, b. 1863)
Roan Eagle Ledger Book (pg.85)
Lakota
Northern Plains
ca. 1890
Inventory # P4188a
Ledger Drawing P4394-60

Ledger Drawing

anonymous artist
Goodwyn Ledger Book
Lakota
Wood Mountain, Saskatchewan
ca. 1880
Inventory # P4394-60