community Art #9
Six American Indian tribes – the Kaw, Osage, Otoe-Missouria, Pawnee, Ponca and Tonkawa – gather each year to celebrate their tribal heritage.
– The Standing Bear Powwow: a Gathering of Tribes, a Celebration of Culture (http://cdnorigin.travelok.com/article_page/the-standing-bear-powwow-a-gathering-of-tribes-a-celebration-of-culture)
The standing bear pow-wow is held near the Standing Bear Monument in Ponca City Oklahoma. the monument is our Tribal form of community art. the monument is dedicated to chief Standing Bear of the Ponca Nation. He is known for his ability to stand up for not only his own rights but for the rights of all Indian people alike. He went to trial and won the case that determined Indian people were humans and equal or the same as other nationalities.
The concept of “ART”, is a great way to explain the uniqueness of Native American Culture. Each different tribal nation has differences represented through songs and dance. in the way we wear our clothes to the materials we use to make regalia. Native art is in every aspect of cultural gathering and traditions. We use art to tell stories and teach our ways to the future generations and restore our knowledge in our culture.
“Watching these six tribes work together on a project is incredibly inspiring and there is an amazing amount of non-native support for the powwow in the Ponca City area. From volunteers to corporate partners, there’s just a tremendous outpouring of support from the non-native community. That’s very gratifying to the tribes and ultimately supports what we’re all about, which is educating.”
– The Standing Bear Powwow: a Gathering of Tribes, a Celebration of Culture
The form of Art is used to educate the community about the tribes history and encourage the learning for future events.
A colorful 60-foot diameter circular viewing court is located at the feet of Standing Bear and contains large sandstone boulders around its parameter affixed with the official brass seals of the six area tribes, Osage, Pawnee, Otoe-Missouria Kaw, Tonkawa and Ponca. The names of eight clans of the Ponca Tribe are inlaid in the floor of the plaza in earth tone colors of terra cotta red, pine green and various shades of browns. A center pool reflects the sky and at its center the eternal flame of “grandfather fire” burns on a large round sandstone pedestal.