Curators Anthony Berlant and Mary Hunt Kahlenberg discuss their exhibition of Navajo blankets at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art on July 14, 1972, which traveled extensively throughout the United States and Europe. They talk with Clare Spark about the technical and social relevance of Native textiles and raise important issues about utility, non-alienation and the artist in society. The conversation is interwoven with poems, chants, stories and excerpts from a recent article on strip mining in Black Mesa which underlines the decline of the blanket as a result of cultural and economic imperialism. Program includes readings from the following publications: the exhibit catalog entitled "The Navajo Blanket," to be published by LACMA and Praeger Press; "Navajo Wildlands: as long as the river shall run," a Sierra Club Ballantine book; "Masked gods: Navajo and Pueblo ceremonialism" by Frank Waters, published by Ballantine; the July/August edition of "Art in America," a special issue on the American Indian. Readings performed by Ruth Buell and Larry Moss. The program contains the following Navajo ceremonial chants: Song of the Yei Bi Chei (Yébîchai), Silversmith song, Spinning dance, Woman's song, Corn grinding songs, Chant of the enemy way, Squaw dance song, Peyote song, Circle dance songs, and Farewell love song. The Yei Bi Chei (Yébîchai) ceremony is performed to treat patients afflicted with eye trouble, ear trouble, or paralysis of some part of the body. This program was produced, written, and directed by Clare Spark Loeb for KPFK and Pacifica Radio.
This recording has been digitally preserved as part of Pacifica's American Women Making History and Culture: 1963-1982 grant preservation project, and is available for research and reference . Please contact the archives via telephone: 818-506-1077 or email: americanwomen at pacificaradioarchives dot org for information on how to obtain a copy of this program. Thank you.