Art imitates life at History Museum’s annual contemporary Native art exhibit

June 14, 2016

TACOMA… Now in its 11th year, the Washington State Historical Society has once again opened IN THE SPIRIT Contemporary Native Arts Exhibit at the State History Museum in Tacoma. 

Showcasing original work from Native American artists, IN THE SPIRIT kicks off Thursday, June 16, with an awards ceremony for Best in Show, Honoring Innovation, Honoring the Northwest, and Honoring Tradition, which begins at 6:30 p.m. Visitors to the exhibit cast their votes for the People’s Choice Award and the Historical Society chooses a work to purchase for its collection. Admission that day is free from 2 to 8 p.m. thanks to Free Third Thursday sponsorship from Columbia Bank. 

“There really is no better time to feature these amazing works of art than when the museum is open to everyone,” said Molly Wilmoth, Lead Program Manager at the History Museum. “In The Spirit provides a glimpse into the culture and heritage of Native artists that many people wouldn’t ordinarily have access to, and we’re proud to be able to bring that to them.” 

The artwork on display can be previewed at the Historical Society’s website. Artists whose works are on display this year include: 

  • Philip H. Red Eagle
  • Kathey Ervin
  • Chholing P. Taha
  • Ruth Whitener
  • Ka'ila Farrell-Smith
  • Justin McCarthy
  • Earl Davis
  • Jennifer Angaiak Wood
  • Kenny Waltman
  • Terresa White
  • Leah Thomason Bromberg
  • Lillian Pitt
  • Denny Sparr Hurtado
  • Tony Boyd
  • Crystal Worl
  • Jeffrey Veregge
  • Linley B. Logan
  • Bernice Akamine
  • Charles W Bloomfield
  • Ramon Murillo
  • Misty Kalama-Archer

The annual summertime event culminates with the Native Arts Market and Festival on August 13 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Washington State History Museum, 1911 Pacific Ave. in Tacoma.  IN THE SPIRIT closes the following day. The market will offer handmade Native artwork and the festival will feature culture sharing from musicians, dancers, demonstrators, and more. Admission to the festival and the museum is free the entire day. For more information, please visit