WASHINGTON – A new exhibit, Reinventing Tradition: American Indian Design in Contemporary Clothing, will be open to the public from April 20, 2007 through the summer at the Department of the Interior museum at 1849 C Street N.W. The exhibit contains many contemporary outfits, rarely seen pieces from the permanent collections of the Interior Museum, and photographs of contemporary and traditional clothing.
Traditional garments often used natural materials, such as porcupine quills, animal skins, bark, and shell to create a distinctive look, statement, or style with their clothes. The exhibit includes examples of traditional clothing and adornment, primarily from the 1900s, including extremely delicate pieces such as a woven spruce root Haida hat.
The exhibit also features the work of contemporary Indian designers who create various clothing designs that can be worn to work, for a wedding, on the streets of New York or on the runways of Paris. Indian designers have entered all fashion markets from the ready-to-wear to haute culture.
The museum is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday (except Federal holidays), and during the third Saturday of each month from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. The visitor entrance to the Main Interior Building is at 1849 C Street, NW. Admission is free, however, each adult must have photo identification for security clearance. The public also has access to the Indian Craft Shop, the Interior Library and, on weekdays, the cafeteria.
For more information, please call 202-208-4659 or go to the Interior Museum website: www.doi.gov/interiormuseum. For a complete tour of the building and its murals, please make an appointment with the staff at least a week before your visit to ensure that there will be a guide available.