To offer visitors more opportunities to deepen their relationship with the
newest High Desert Museum exhibit Creations of Spirit, the Museum has numerous
programs on the calendar this spring. Many of the artists and knowledge holders will
offer a deeper insight into Native communities and tradition.

Creations of Spirit immerses visitors in contemporary and traditional artwork made by
seven renowned Indigenous artists. The cultural items are examples of how Native
artwork is often tied to purpose and intrinsic to thriving communities, utilitarian and
ceremonial, as well as part of the continuation of Native traditions.

Thursday, March 16 – Object + Spirit: The Life and Story of Plateau Objects
in Museum Collections Items created by Indigenous Plateau artists are imbued with
the spirit of their maker and have ongoing connections to contemporary communities.
What does this understanding mean for objects held at museums? Join Phillip Cash
Cash, Ph.D., (Weyíiletpuu/Cayuse, Niimíipuu/Nez Perce) and Professor Michael
Holloman (Colville Confederated Tribes) in a discussion about living Plateau objects and

Phillip Cash Cash, Ph.D., is a nationally known artist, writer, endangered language
advocate and linguistic anthropology scholar. As a fluent Nez Perce speaker, he works
with communities and professional organizations on projects of cultural advocacy,
identity and communication. Professor Michael Holloman is the coordinator of Native
Arts Outreach and Education in the College of Arts and Sciences at Washington State
University. Holloman has also directed the American Indian Studies program and
Plateau Center for American Indian Studies at WSU.

The event is from 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm with the Rimrock Café open for an hour before the
program begins. Tickets are $10. Museum members receive a 20% discount, and the
event is free for Tribal members. RSVP at

Thursday, April 6 – Indigenous Filmmakers Panel Indigenous filmmakers are
breaking barriers in true cinematic storytelling. Join LaRonn Katchia (Warm Springs,
Wasco, Paiute) and other Native filmmakers as they share their current work and
discuss the importance of Native representation in film. The discussion will celebrate
how this work is continuing storytelling traditions and promoting positive
representation of Native people. You will also learn ways that you can support this
important work.

The event is from 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm with the Rimrock Café open for an hour before the
program begins. Tickets are $10. Museum members receive a 20% discount, and the
event is free for Tribal members. RSVP at

Tuesday, April 18 – Indian Education: Intergenerational Learning, Healing
and Advocacy Renowned educator and activist Patricia Whitefoot (Yakama Nation)
and language educator and advocate Valerie Switzler (Confederated Tribes of Warm
Springs) will discuss how Plateau tribes are passing on Indigenous knowledge and
traditions to future generations. Videos and other visuals will aid in telling stories of
intergenerational learning and youth engagement. Learn how you can support current
advocacy efforts to enact inclusive education policies and address the full impact and
legacy of boarding school policies.

Patricia Whitefoot was appointed by President Obama to the National Advisory Council
on Indian Education in 2009. She is an influential advocate for missing and murdered
Indigenous women and has testified before the United States Congress numerous times
regarding Indigenous rights. Valerie Switzler works in the Culture and Heritage
Department of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. As an education leader, she
led efforts around the passage of SB 13 Tribal History, Shared History, which requires
Oregon elementary schools to include curriculum about the state’s Native peoples.

The event is from 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm with the Rimrock Café open for an hour before the
program begins. Tickets are $10. Museum members receive a 20% discount, and the
event is free for Tribal members. RSVP at

Saturday, May 6 – Indigenous Arts Day Join us in celebrating Native artforms of
this region. Artists from the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs will share their
artwork and demonstrate basket weaving, cornhusk weaving and other techniques. You
will have a chance to learn about how artists today are continuing these important
traditions and how you can support their work.

The event is from 10:00 am – 2:30 pm and is free with Museum admission. Tribal
members receive free Museum admission every day. Indigenous Arts Day is made
possible in partnership with Tananáwit, A Community of Warm Springs Artists

The artists whose work is featured in Creations of Spirit are Joe Feddersen (Colville),
RYAN! Feddersen (Colville), Natalie Kirk (Warm Springs), H’Klumaiyat Roberta Joy
Kirk (Wasco, Warm Springs, Diné), Phillip Cash Cash, Ph.D., (Cayuse, Nez Perce),
Jefferson Greene (Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs) and Kelli Palmer (Wasco,
Warm Springs).

Creations of Spirit will be open at the High Desert Museum through Sunday, October 1,
2023. Learn more at

Creations of Spirit is made possible by Bend Cultural Tourism Fund, The Bend
Foundation, Central Oregon Daily, Ford Family Foundation, National Endowment for
the Arts, Old Mill District, Oregon Community Foundation and Oregon Heritage
Commission with support from Bend Magazine, Cascade A&E, James F. and Marion L.
Miller Foundation and MODERNFAB.


The HIGH DESERT MUSEUM opened in Bend, Oregon in 1982. It brings together
wildlife, cultures, art, history and the natural world to convey the wonder of North
America’s High Desert. The Museum is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization accredited by
the American Alliance of Museums, is a Smithsonian Affiliate, was the 2019 recipient of
the Western Museums Association’s Charles Redd Award for Exhibition Excellence and
was a 2021 recipient of the National Medal for Museum and Library Service. To learn
more, visit and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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