Edward S. Curtis Gallery (DGM Module 3-2)


I came across the name Edward Sheriff Curtis while reading Thomas King’s 2003 Massey Lectures, The Truth About Stories. Curtis travelled throughout North America in the early twentieth century, photographing “Indians”. According to King, Curtis took over 40,000 photos, of which over 20,000 were published. The gallery linked above shows thumbnails of a small portion of these photos, along with links to Curtis’ biography and some of his writings.

What is particularly interesting about these photos, again according to King, is the way Curtis constructed an image of the “Indian”, carrying “Indian” clothing, wigs and and other cultural paraphernalia to lend to those who didn’t look quite Indian enough to match the late-Romantic image of the noble Indian, even paying some to shave off western-looking facial hair.


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