Haudenosaunee history front and centre in Germany

BERLIN, GERMANY – Germany’s fascination with the Haudenosaunee people, and all North American Indigenous cultures, was once again made evident as the Federal Republic of Germany opened an exhibit of Iroquoian art, historical artifacts and information called, “On the Trails of the Iroquois.” The exhibit will run for the month of November and is expected to draw tens of thousands of museum visitors.

The exhibition traces the development of Iroquois culture from its origins up to its vibrant articulations in the present-day United States and Canada. According to the catalogue the exhibit “follows their varied history through colonial times characterized by war, trade, and European missionary efforts; the subsequent weakening of their power through loss of land and political autonomy and the eventual break-up of the League after the American Revolution; the cultural transformations during the Reservation period; and their strive for sovereignty in the twentieth century up to very contemporary concerns.”

The exhibition of some 500 objects brings together for the first time historical paintings and drawings, precious ethnographic objects, and extraordinary examples of Iroquois contemporary art from major collections in Europe, the United States, and Canada.

Curator Dr. Sylvia Kasprychi researched the material presented along with important Iroquoian scientists and artists from Canada and the USA, including Six Nations’ Dr. Thomas Hill, former director of Woodland Cultural Centre in Brantford, Ontario, and Peter Jemison, manager of the Ganondagan State Historic Site, in New York.

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