Shape of the Museum: Paul Chaat Smith and Wanda Nanibush

headshots of speakers Wanda Nanibush and Paul Chaat Smith

Wanda Nanibush image by the AGO, Paul Chaat Smith by Paul Morigi/AP Images for National Museum of the American Indian.


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Shape of the Museum: Paul Chaat Smith and Wanda Nanibush

Thursday August 6, 3 pm

Join Paul Chaat Smith, Curator, Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in conversation with Wanda Nanibush, AGO Curator of Indigenous Art. Museums and cultural institutions around the world are facing unique opportunities and challenges. This series of conversations invites professionals from around the world who are thinking about art and audiences in different ways.

Paul Chaat Smith (Comanche) joined the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in 2001, where he now serves as Curator. His exhibitions include Americans, James Luna’s Emendatio, Fritz Scholder: Indian/Not Indian, and Brian Jungen: Strange Comfort. He’s the coauthor of Like a Hurricane: the Indian Movement from Alcatraz to Wounded Knee (1996), and Everything You Know about Indians Is Wrong (2009). Although he spends most of his time crafting game-changing exhibitions and texts, he also enjoys reading obsessively about the early days of the Soviet space program, watching massive amounts of televised sports (pandemics permitting), and writing about himself in the third person.

Wanda Nanibush is Curator, Indigenous Art at the AGO. Selected AGO exhibitions include Karoo Ashevak (2019), Rebecca Belmore Facing the Monumental (2018), JS McLean Centre for Indigenous & Canadian Art (2018), Rita Letendre: Fire & Light (2017), Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989 (2016). Prior to joining the AGO in 2016, Wanda Nanibush held various curatorial and academic roles across Canada since 2001. In addition to independent curation, Nanibush held the post of Aboriginal Arts Officer at the Ontario Arts Council, Executive Director of ANDPVA and strategic planning for CCA. She holds a Master’s Degree in visual studies from the University of Toronto, where she has also taught graduate courses. Nanibush has published widely in magazines, books and journals. As co-lead of the AGO’s department of Indigenous and Canadian art, Nanibush’s area of specialty is Indigenous Art and collection diversification.

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Shape of the Museum: Paul Chaat Smith and Wanda Nanibush


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