Two groundbreaking Wisconsin artists have been named 2020 National Heritage Fellows by the National Endowment for the Arts, the highest honor awarded to folk and traditional artists in the United States.
Karen Ann Hoffman of Stevens Point is a citizen of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and practices the art form of Iroquois raised beadwork. Hoffman’s artistry is simultaneously grounded in the 19th century beading techniques of members of the Iroquois Confederacy and contemporary in form, resulting in work such as raised beaded vases, rocking chairs, and pillows. Read more about Karen Ann Hoffman here: https://www.wisconsinlife.org/story/stevens-point-woman-creates-contemporary-art-using-iroquois-raised-beadwork/
Fellow Wisconsin artist, Wayne Valliere of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, is one of only five Ojibwe master birchbark canoe makers in the Upper Midwest. Over the last several years UW-Madison faculty and staff have collaborated with Wayne on a number of projects. In 2013 Wayne Valliere was an artist in residence with the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Art Department and collaborated with students, faculty, and community members on a canoe building project. Several productions resulted from this program including the Wiigwaasi-Jiimaan: These Canoes Carry Culture project, which can be found here: https://wiigwaasijiimaan.wordpress.com/.
The Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures served as a proud supporter of Valliere’s work during his residency in Madison and the canoe produced in that semester currently hangs in the Dejope Residence Hall on the UW campus.