Art Scholar Discusses Native American Regalia

Willamette University Anthropology Professor Rebecca Dobkins, curator of the exhibition The Art of Ceremony: Regalia of Native Oregon, will discuss the state's historical and contemporary ceremonial Native American regalia in a free lecture Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. in the Paulus Lecture Hall at Willamette University College of Law.

The lecture, co-sponsored by the Salem Society of the Archaeological Institute of America, is presented in conjunction with The Art of Ceremony, on display through Jan. 18 at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art. The exhibition features historical and contemporary ceremonial regalia from all nine of Oregon's federally recognized tribes, much of which has never been seen by the general public. The exhibition introduces non-tribal audiences to the history, beauty and function of regalia within tribal life and thought.

Dobkins holds a bachelor of arts degree in women's studies from the University of Massachusetts and a master of arts and PhD in anthropology from the University of California, Berkeley, where she specialized in Native American art and culture. Dobkins is faculty curator of Native American Art at the museum, and she is the author of numerous articles and books on the topic. Dobkins has curated 13 other Native art exhibitions for the museum, featuring Rick Bartow, Lillian Pitt, James Lavadour and Maori weavings from New Zealand, among others.

The Oregon Arts Commission, with funds from the National Endowment for the Arts, selected The Art of Ceremony: Regalia of Native Oregon as the state's 2008 American Masterpieces project. Additional support has been provided by an endowment gift from The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde through the Spirit Mountain Community Fund, and by grants from the Siletz Tribal Charitable Fund, the City of Salem's Transient Occupancy Tax funds, the Oregon Arts Commission, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and a Millicent McIntosh Fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation.

The Hallie Ford Museum of Art is located at 700 State St. (corner of State and Cottage streets) in downtown Salem near the campus of Willamette University. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. The galleries are closed Mondays. Admission is $3 for adults and $2 for seniors and students. Children younger than 12 are admitted free, and Tuesdays are admission-free. For more information, call (503) 370-6855 or visit