Press Release

New History Colorado Exhibition Explores Native American Art and Experiences Through the Works of Danielle SeeWalker

Exhibition pairs contemporary art with historic objects to spark dialogue and dispel preconceptions of Native American communities

DENVER — February 15, 2024 — On February 29, 2024, the History Colorado Center will open Danielle SeeWalker: But We Have Something to Say, a vivid exhibition that pairs contemporary Native American art with historic objects maintained by History Colorado. Featuring the artwork of Danielle SeeWalker, a Húŋkpapȟa Lakȟóta citizen from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Danielle SeeWalker: But We Have Something to Say explores issues important to Native American peoples and communities while also tasking visitors with reconsidering their preconceptions of Indigenous art.

Luke Perkins, Manager of Communications and Public Relations
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A self-taught “Artivist,” SeeWalker bridges advocacy and art to express her cultural and personal identity, while also exploring the challenges faced by Native American people and communities and displaying her experimental styles.

“My aesthetic is different from what people might expect Native American art to be; it's not the stereotypical Chief on a horse overlooking a river from a hill. I'm showing that Native art can take on different forms, styles and mediums,” SeeWalker said. 

In But We Have Something to Say, SeeWalker’s vibrant color palettes, expressionistic art strategies, and Lakota traditions will be displayed in conversation with striking nineteenth-century hair ornaments, beaded spoons, historic documents and images, and moccasins in ways that illuminate censored and erased histories. 

“Danielle’s work forges a connection between the past and present,” said Felicia Bartley (Pueblo of Isleta), Assistant Curator of Indigenous Culture and Heritage at History Colorado. “It brings Indigeneity into the here and now, while creating on-ramps into complicated historical topics – like assimilation, displacement, and erasure – and combating stereotypes that lock us into beads and buckskin.” 

Influenced by SeeWalker’s practice of using archival photos and historic Native American objects to inspire her art, But We Have Something to Say incorporates objects from the History Colorado Collection to tell stories that have not been explored at the institution in the past, or have been misrepresented.

“State Historical Societies have legacies of ‘salvage anthropology’ and perpetuating the Vanishing Indian stereotypes,” Bartley said. “I hope this exhibition serves as an inspiration to other Native artists to see what is in their local historical societies and start a dialogue about the stories that haven’t been told and the voices that are sleeping in their archives.”

SeeWalker echoed the sentiment of hoping But We Have Something to Say will serve as an inspiration for Native artists, especially Native women.

“I think women in the art world, especially women of color and Native American women, are underrepresented,” SeeWalker said. “Seeing my work given a platform like this means so much for me, my ancestors, and for younger generations who will see it and be inspired to share their perspectives.”

To celebrate the opening of Danielle SeeWalker: But We Have Something to Say, the History Colorado Center is hosting an opening reception and artist talk with SeeWalker on February 29, 2024, from 5:30 – 8 p.m. This opening reception is free and open to the public but RSVP is required.

Danielle SeeWalker: But We Have Something to Say opens February 29, 2024, at the History Colorado Center in Downtown Denver. The History Colorado Center is located at 1200 N Broadway and is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission for kids 18 and under is free every day.

This project is funded in part by the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation, cultivating arts and leaders for a vibrant community.

About Danielle SeeWalker
Danielle SeeWalker is Húŋkpapȟa Lakȟóta and a citizen of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota. She is an artist, writer, activist, and boymom of two, based in Denver, Colorado. Her visual artwork often incorporates the use of mixed media and experimentation while incorporating traditional Native American materials, scenes, and messaging. Her artwork pays homage to her identity as a Lakȟóta wíŋyaŋ (woman) and her passion to redirect the narrative to an accurate and insightful representation of contemporary Native America while still acknowledging historical events.

Alongside her passion for creating visual art, Danielle is a freelance writer and published her first book in 2020 titled Still Here: A Past to Present Insight of Native American People & Culture. She is also very dedicated to staying connected and involved in her Native community and currently serves as City Commissioner for the Denver American Indian Commission. Danielle has also been working on a personal, passion project since 2013 with her long-time friend called The Red Road Project. The focus of this project is to document, through words and photographs, what it means to be Native American in the 21st century by capturing inspiring and positive stories of people and communities within Indian Country.

About History Colorado
History Colorado is a division of the Colorado Department of Higher Education and a 501(c)3 non-profit that has served more than 75,000 students and 500,000 people in Colorado each year. It is a 144-year-old institution that operates eleven museums and historic sites, a free public research center, the Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation which provides technical assistance, educational opportunities, and other access to archaeology and historic preservation, and the History Colorado State Historical Fund (SHF), which is one of the nation’s largest state funded preservation programs of its kind. More than 70% of SHF grants are allocated in rural areas of the state. Additionally, the offices of the State Archaeologist and the State Historic Preservation Officer are part of History Colorado. 

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. #HistoryColorado