This year is the centennial of the birth of seminal Native American artist Lloyd Kiva New, and three Santa Fe arts institutions are celebrating this anniversary in style. Locally, New, a Cherokee, is known as the Institute of American Indian Art’s (IAIA) first artistic director, yet nationally, Native people refer to him as the "Godfather of Native Fashion."
Museum of Indian Arts and Culture’s career retrospective A New Century: The Life and Legacy of Cherokee Artist and Educator Lloyd "Kiva" New (February 14 through December 30, 2016). A New Century is a mesmerizing look into New’s storied life from his humble beginnings on the family farm in Oklahoma to the burgeoning days at IAIA. In between he strides the decks of the USS Sanborn during World War II and the halls of the Art Institute of Chicago. Opening successive and successful boutiques and craft centers in the gleaming post-war enclave of Scottsdale, Arizona. New was a pioneer in the worlds of fashion, entrepreneurship, and Native art instruction. His vision of cultural studies and creative arts education continues to influence and inspire. Through personal recollections, photos, archival documents, and objects pour la couture, New Century: The Life and Legacy of Cherokee Artist and Educator Lloyd "Kiva" New reviews the life of this American Indian visionary.
The Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, and the New Mexico Museum of Art will each present an exhibition in 2016 focusing on key aspects of Lloyd Kiva New’s (b. 1916 - d. 2002) significant contributions to contemporary Native culture. Additionally, the three institutions are planning a symposium, multiple lectures, panel discussions, a fashion show, Gala, and, as pure celebration, a 100th birthday party.