Approx. 9” X 9” X 6”
MRI’s, Frosted vellum paper hand-printed with permanent ink
Prior to 1990 there were no laws regulating the excavation of Indian burial sites and what occurred to the remains and objects found at these sites. Individuals profited from the selling of these remains to museums and private collections without regard to the cultural significance. I have met many people who were inspired to become active in the repatriation battle when they unexpectedly saw clothing and artifacts in museum displays that had only recently been buried with their loved ones. The 1990 passage of NAGPRA (Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act) gave tribes the legal authority to stop this grave looting and reclaim ancestral remains, funerary and patrimony items from museums and private collections.
This lidded “coffin-style” basket is woven from MRI’s to illustrate our connection to our ancestors through their buried remains. These splints are woven with those cut from frosted vellum, on which the words of NAGPRA have been hand-written.
The pattern is a traditional Cherokee one called Arrowhead Point.