Crow Lodge of Twenty-five Buffalo Skins
oil on canvas
24 x 29 in. (60.9 x 73.7 cm)
Smithsonian American Art Museum
Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr.
A little background: In the 1830s George Catlin, a painter, traveled across the Great Plains in order to document the "manners, customs, and conditions" of the Native American Plains tribes. Under the Ancestral Lands heading, Anthropologist Peter Nabokov describes a fundamental difficulty in discussing Native Americans as a culture-the multiplicity of tribes and cultures to which we refer when we say Native Americans.