Anpetu Sapa Win

Created for “Original Green: An exhibit of contemporary American Indian art” (2010)
Quilt. 36″W x 42″L, 100% commercial and hand-dyed cotton with shell and bead embellishments.

Anpetu Sapa Win means “Dark Day Woman” in Dakota. There is a legend that she went over the falls with her son in a canoe because her husband took another wife.
The background fabric was hand-dyed through a process called snow-resist and is the same as that used in “Otokaheya” and “Owamniyomni.” The figure of a woman was apparent to me as I worked on this piece; however, viewers see many more faces and figures in the sky than I did.
One of the flour companies had an ad campaign in the late 1800s called “Eventually” which was a sign above the mill. The edges of the buildings in skyline are sewn with jagged edges as if the buildings are crumbling. The falls are barely visible. Along the shoreline of the Stone Arch Bridge are fresh-water oyster shells from the river behind my home in southern Minnesota. These oysters are no longer found in the Minnesota or Mississippi rivers because of pollution.
“Eventually,” the rivers will someday be clean enough again for fresh-water oysters, the buildings will be gone, and our Dakota stories will remain.

  • Categories
    Fiber Art, Narratives

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