Always Becoming

Nora Naranjo-Morse, Gail Joice, and Kelly McHugh

Abstract

The evolution and stewardship of Always Becoming, created by artist Nora Naranjo-Morse (Santa Clara Pueblo) for the National Museum of the American Indian, is seemingly contrary to the role and purpose of a conservator to preserve and protect works of art. This unique project, however, defines and illustrates the benefits of relationships that go beyond the convention. It puts the role of the conservator in a larger team, whose purpose is well articulated and redefines the concept of care. Care takes on a larger purpose, underscoring the important principle for Native people of returning to the earth. This talk will discuss the dynamics of the ongoing care of these sculptures as they continue to bring people together, engaging the artist, collections managers, horticulturalists, conservators, and the public.

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