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June 24, 2020

Acquisition: Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, "I See Red: Target"

María Berrío, A Sunburst Restrained, 2019, collage with Japanese paper and watercolor on canvas, National Gallery of Art, Washington, Gift of Erika and John Toussaint.

Jaune Quick-to-See Smith
I See Red: Target
, 1992
mixed media on canvas
overall (three parts): 340.4 x 106.7 cm (134 x 42 in.)
National Gallery of Art, Washington
Purchased with funds from Emily and Mitchell Rales
2020.6.1

The Gallery has just acquired I See Red: Target (1992) by Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (b. 1940), the first painting by a Native American artist to enter the collection. Smith, an enrolled Salish member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Nation in Montana, is one of the most highly respected artists of the past 40 years. An impressive 11-foot-tall mixed-media work on canvas, I See Red: Target addresses both local and national conversations around the commercial branding of Indigenous American identity through Smith's deftly layered assemblage of printed ephemera and painterly touches. This painting joins 24 works—either photographs or works on paper—by Native American artists currently in the Gallery's permanent collection. Other artists represented include Sally Larsen, Victor Masayesva Jr., and Kay WalkingStick.

I See Red: Target features a target and darts that are arranged at the top of the work to allude to feathers in a headdress. Smith attached two canvases collaged with clippings from mainstream newspapers as well as the Char-Koosta News, a comic book cover, fabric, and a pennant. The alternating bands of historic images of Native Americans used in a reservation community service notice bear the stain-like drips of bloodred paint, which serve as an evocative device throughout Smith's I See Red series to call up issues of history, identity, race, and rage.

Press Release:
Major Painting by Native American Artist Jaune Quick-To-See Smith Acquired by National Gallery of Art

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