Press Release

Public Invited to Free Opening Celebration of “Merciless Indian Savages” at Fort Garland Museum and Cultural Center

Denver, Colo. (June 15, 2022) — On June 24, 2022 at 11 a.m., the public is invited to a free opening day celebration for the Fort Garland Museum and Cultural Center’s newest exhibition, “Gregg Deal’s (Pyramis Lake Paiute) Merciless Indian Savages,” featuring a special appearance by the artist.

In the exhibition, nationally renowned contemporary artist Gregg Deal leads visitors through an Indigenous exploration of what American Democracy means in Indian Country. Deal’s works reveal a political process that marginalizes Native peoples in the service of American myth-making. 

The celebration will honor the history, beauty, and strength of Indigenous people beginning with a performance by the Dineh Tah Navajo Dancers at 11 a.m.  At noon, Deal will discuss the history and inspiration for the exhibit. The event will conclude with a poetry reading and discussion by Indigenous poets, including former Albuquerque Poet Laureate Jessica Helen Lopez. To make the day extra special, June 24 is the date in 1858 that Fort Garland officially opened and is now known as “Fort Garland Day.”

In addition to Merciless Indian Savages, the museum will also be opening a Ute STEM exhibition on June 24 with a variety of interactive children's activities. Both exhibitions will be available at Fort Garland through September 2022.  The museum opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. on June 24. Admission will be free all day.  Find more information here.

Photos of Gregg Deal, Jessica Helen Lopez and Dineh Tah Navajo Dancers are downloadable here. Credit: courtesy of Fort Garland Museum and Cultural Center

The Fort Garland Museum and Cultural Center is a Community Museum of History Colorado


About History Colorado
History Colorado is a division of the Colorado Department of Higher Education and a 501(c)3 non-profit that serves more than 75,000 students and 500,000 people in Colorado each year. It is a 143-year-old institution that operates Colorado’s oldest museum, ten additional museums and historic sites, a free public research center, the Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation, and the History Colorado State Historical Fund (SHF), which is the nation’s largest preservation program of its kind. More than 70% of SHF grants are allocated in rural areas of the state.

History Colorado’s mission is to create a better future for Colorado by inspiring wonder in our past. We serve as the state’s memory, preserving and sharing the places, stories, and material culture of Colorado through educational programs, historic preservation grants, collecting, outreach to Colorado communities, the History Colorado Center and Stephen H. Hart Research Center in Denver, and 10 other museums and historic attractions statewide. History Colorado is one of only six Smithsonian Affiliates in Colorado. Visit, or call 303-HISTORY, for more information.