Milestones in the Hopi Iconography Project
- The Hopi Iconography Project incorporates some of the research and resources of the Hopi Mural Project and the Southwest Mural Project, 1999-2004. These earlier projects explored Ancestral Pueblo mural and pottery painting, with a focus on the fourteenth to seventeenth century Hopi site of Awat'ovi (see Watson Smith's book, When is a Kiva?) A grant from the Getty Foundation supported research on the murals and their contexts, as well as conservation of original mural fragments from Awat'ovi and Kawayka'a, now housed at the Museum of Northern Arizona and Harvard Peabody Museum.
- In 2001, Hopi artists Michael Kabotie and Delbridge Honanie spent several months as artists-in-residence at the Museum of Northern Arizona, supported by a grant from the Flinn Foundation. They researched ancient mural and pottery painting, and produced six canvases for MNA's Fine Art Collection and six panels that make up the modern kiva mural Journey of the Human Spirit, now on display in MNA's Kiva Gallery. In collaboration with writers Tanya Lee and Garrett Rosenblatt, they wrote a story about their experiences and work (Murals and Metaphors, Plateau, volume 3 no. 1).
- We Are Here: Pueblo Painting and Place, the Fall/Winter 2005-2006 issue of Plateau, presents research on ancient rock paintings, kiva murals, and historic murals at the Desert Watchtower in Grand Canyon National Park. Articles by Polly Schaafsma, Lawrence Loendorf, Elizabeth Newsome, Jessica Welton, and Ferrell Secakuku complement photography by Robert Mark and Evelyn Billo, and a demonstration of how Mark and Billo's company, Rupestrian CyberServices, uses digital photography to produce panoramas and color enhancements to record and preserve rock art murals. This publication was supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
- In 2005, the Museum of Northern Arizona and Hopi Tribe signed a Memorandum of Understanding that established a collaborative relationship for research and education. The Hopi Iconography Project is the first joint project begun under the MOU.
- In 2006, the Project completed an exhibit planning and consultation grant from the Rockefeller Foundation and applied for additional grants. We published Murals and Metaphors, Plateau vol. 3 no. 1.
- In 2007, the Project received a planning grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. We convened an advisory group to plan a traveling exhibit entitled Sìitala: Life in Balance, World in Bloom, selected objects and artworks, prepared an education plan, and initial exhibit design concepts.
- In 2009, the Project submitted an NEH exhibit implementation grant proposal that was not funded.
- In 2010, project director Susan Secakuku completed a plan for a new permanent Hopi exhibit at MNA. We are still seeking funding for this exhibit and its associated publications and programming.
- Also in 2010, curator Kelley Hays-Gilpin and co-editor Polly Schaafsma published MNA Research Bulletin 67, entitled Painting the Cosmos: Metaphor and Worldview in Images from the Southwest Pueblos and Mexico.