Saturday, November 15, 2008

Powwow Pictures

A comment from a faithful reader in England reminded me that I posted a nice set of photos from another larger powwow several years ago. They are in my old blog. Click:


Zhu said... [Reply to comment]

Wow, I love this picture! The color are amazing...

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

What vivid colours they use, I didn't realise the native Americans painted their faces as shown in this set of photographs.
One looks almost oriental.

I'm totally fascinated. Are the outfits made of feathers and dyed to that colouration or, I'm not sure if I want an answer to this one, have they gone man-made? It's difficult to tell from the photographs.

We have absolutely nothing like this, oh, apart from the Beefeaters and, perhaps, the Morris dancers!!!!! Actually, when I type that I realise our whole history is one of costume and colour but we're much more sober and sedate. Nothing wrong with that at all.

AS an aside, this is a beautiful photograph - you can read so much into the expression you have caught.


Tulsa Gentleman said... [Reply to comment]


The brightly colored feathers are probably dyed. The face paint has its basis in tradition but probably is influenced more by the individuals imagination. If you look at the rest of the costumes in my old blog you will see a great variety in styles and ornamentation some with natural elements and others very colorful.

The more elaborate costumes are intended for dancing to the drum music and chants you heard in the little video clips. The young men with the large circular fans or bustles on their back and hips will be dancing with these. In fact the style of these bustles is called "Oklahoma Fancy Dance". When they whirl and bounce around these make a blur of color.

It should not be surprising that all this is a mixture of modern and traditional. The native American culture is rooted in tradition but is a living thing and changes over time.

When I was a boy, Indians were discouraged from speaking their native languages and practicing their tradional dance and religion. Now these things are being encouraged again and the people have a new found pride in their heritage. When I asked the young men in these pictures if I could photograph them they said "sure" and quietly posed them selves for me, then with a nod went about their business.

The boy with the bone breast plate is probably 12 or 13. He was dancing and spinning around and very into being a part of all this.

As for
Thank you for your interest. These things are part of my world and I forget sometimes just how interesting and unusual they must appear to an outsider.

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

Thank you for your explanation re. the powwow pictures - really interesting. I may be knocking on a bit but never too old to learn and I am fascinated by seeing the "real" thing.


Tulsa Gentleman said... [Reply to comment]

You are only a few years older than I. When I stop being interested in what is new to me it will be time to plant me. Cheers!

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

Amen to that :-)