Jimmie Durham 1980 - 1993


In the period between 1973 and 1979 Jimmie Durham was full-time involved with the American Indian Movement and did not make art. He was the director of the International Indian Treaty Council and UN representative. In 1980 he left the AIM, became involved with the New York art scene and re-started making art. His art from that period is full of references to American Indian identity and more importantly it was often a response to the public’s expectations regarding a Native American artist. In 1985 Jimmie Durham made a show in the Alternative Museum in New York called A Matter of Life and Death and Singing. Two years later, he moved to Cuernavaca in Mexico, marking the start of a period in which he exhibited and performed widely worldwide, such as at Documenta IX, M HKA in Antwerp and Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels. In this period, he frequently wrote essays as well as poetry, and published a poetry book in 1988 and in 1993 the collection of essays A Certain Lack of Coherence.

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