Genuine, Authentic, Saddle
For the ethnic textile replica project, I have chosen a horse saddle from the Nez Perce tribe, North America.
This hand embroidered saddle has been made in 1890’s, mainly using Crow stitch. With the intensive technical research, all the materials were carefully selected and reproduced.
Theoretical research on the culture and history of Indigenous people in America has led me to question that the common belief in ‘national identity’ we have is, in fact, a fictional idea. For example, the horse saddle replica that I made is often called as a ‘Genuine Crow Tribe saddle’. But it was originally made in the style of Spanish horse saddle in 16th Century.
What we know as ‘Native American style’ nowadays could not be existing, if there weren’t tradings in betweenEuropeans and Native Americans.
What does 'Ethnicity' means in terms of art and craft?
Can we find something truly original and genuine?
Aren’t we surrounded by the visual remainings of multiple clashes and blend of cultures?