Double Exposure exhibit opens at Seattle Art Museum

ICT editorial team

Exhibition presents work by three contemporary Indigenous artists and explores legacy of photographer Edward S. Curtis

News Release

Seattle Art Museum

The Seattle Art Museum presents Double Exposure: Edward S. Curtis, Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, Will Wilson (June 14–September 9, 2018), featuring iconic early 20th-century photographs by photographer Edward S. Curtis (1868–1952) alongside contemporary works—including photography, video, and installations—by Indigenous artists Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, and Will Wilson. Their powerful portrayals of Native identity offer a compelling counter narrative to stereotypes present in Curtis’s images.

Edward S. Curtis is one of the most well-known photographers of Native people and the American West. Double Exposure features over 150 of his photographs, as well as lantern slides he used in multimedia lectures, audio field recordings made on wax cylinders, and a projection of his docu-drama feature-length film made in British Columbia, In the Land of the Head Hunters (1914).

Threaded throughout the galleries of Curtis works are multimedia installations by Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, and Will Wilson. Their work provides a crucial framework for a critical reassessment and understanding of Curtis’s representations of Native peoples and the complex responses that Natives and others have to those representations today.


SAM presents programs for the public, families, and educators, as well as Art Beyond Sight tours and tours for the public in conjunction with the exhibition. Details are subject to change; additional programs or events may be added. Up-to-date information at

Double Exposure is part of a community-wide initiative revisiting the photographs of Edward S. Curtis and sparking conversations on Native identity, art, and culture that features exhibitions, lectures, and performances through the end of 2018. Find out more at

Mon Jun 11

Double Exposure: Indigenous Peoples' Opening

5:30–8:30 pm

Seattle Art Museum

SAM invites all Native communities to be the first visitors to view the exhibition. This free event is open to any individuals with tribal affiliations in acknowledgement and gratitude for the living legacies of Native people in the Pacific Northwest.

Wed Jun 13

Double Exposure: Member Preview & Happy Hour

Noon–8 pm

Seattle Art Museum

All SAM members are invited to preview the exhibition. Exhibition overviews by Barbara Brotherton, SAM’s Curator of Native American Art, at 12:30 & 6 pm. Happy hour in the Brotman Forum is 5–8 pm, with music; cash bar with beer, wine, a specialty cocktail; and bites for purchase from TASTE Café.

Thu Jun 14

Double Exposure: Community Celebration

5–9 pm

Seattle Art Museum

The whole community is invited to this free, family-friendly opening celebration featuring music, performances, art-making, an artist talk, and more.

Presented by Delta Air Lines and Target. Sponsored by RealNetworks Foundation.

Thu Jun 14

SAM Talks: Double Exposure Artists in Conversation

7–8 pm

Seattle Art Museum

Celebrate the opening of the new exhibition and hear directly from artists Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, and Will Wilson as they discuss their new works on view in the galleries.

Thu Jun 14–Sun Sep 9

Double Exposure Education Gallery

Museum hours

Seattle Art Museum

The exhibition’s education gallery features an interactive installation by artist RYAN! Feddersen (Okanogan /Arrow Lakes) that explores conflicts in Curtis’s work by inviting visitors to put themselves in a similar position of being documented and defined by an outside force.

Sun Jun 17–Sun Sep 9

Drop-In Studio: Art Exposure

11 am–1 pm

Seattle Art Museum

During the run of Double Exposure, SAM hosts a weekly drop-in studio featuring Indigenous artists leading art-making activities. The first workshop features artist Will Wilson, who will teach participants about cyanotype portraits and demonstrate some of his techniques. This hands-on workshop is free and open to the public.

Fri Jun 22–Sat Sep 8

My Favorite Things Tours

Noon–12:30 pm

Seattle Art Museum

In a special edition of the recurring tour series, My Favorite Things, Indigenous community members, artists, and educators share their knowledge and perspectives in 30-minute tours every Friday and Saturday.

Sat Jun 23

Art Beyond Sight: Double Exposure

Experience the lasting photographs of Native Americans by Edward S. Curtis alongside artwork of contemporary Indigenous artists Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, and Will Wilson. Docents will provide verbal descriptions of the differing perspectives represented in Double Exposure. Free for visitors with low or no-vision and their guests; advance registration is required.

Wed Jul 11

Through Her Eyes: Indigenous Shorts

7:30–9:30 pm

Seattle Art Museum

Experience a cinematic package of stories curated in partnership with Longhouse Media and Double Exposure artist Tracy Rector that highlights cutting-edge films by Native women directors.

Thu Jul 12–Thu Aug 30

Summer at SAM

Olympic Sculpture Park

SAM presents free programming at the Olympic Sculpture Park. Thursday evenings feature live music, art-making, performances, and food trucks. Saturdays feature yoga led by 8 Limbs Yoga Centers, Zumba, and drop-in studios with local artists. In conjunction with Double Exposure, this year’s season centers Native and Indigenous artists and voices.

Presented by Delta Air Lines and Target.

Wed Aug 1–Fri Aug 3

Summer Institute for Educators: Indigenous Voices: Past, Present, Future

10:30 am–4:30 pm

Seattle Art Museum & Olympic Sculpture Park

During this three-day intensive institute, explore ideas around native perspective, voices, histories, and cultures. Participants will work with local artists and experts and create artwork examining representation, tradition, and identity. This workshop is open to educators of all levels and subjects.

Fri Aug 24

SAM Remix

8–11:59 pm

Olympic Sculpture Park

Get in on this night of eclectic performances, tours, dancing, creating, and exploring. Become part of Seattle’s creative community of artists, performers, and thinkers through this unique museum experience inspired by the outdoor sculptures at the Olympic Sculpture Park and exhibitions on view at the Seattle Art Museum.

Remix is sponsored by Delta Air Lines and Starbucks Coffee Company. Media sponsors are The Stranger and KEXP 90.3 FM.


Double Exposure: Edward S. Curtis, Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, Will Wilson is organized by the Seattle Art Museum in partnership with the New York Public Library.

Special exhibitions at SAM are made possible by donors to the

Jeffrey & Susan Brotman Fund for Special Exhibitions

Major Sponsor

Ellen Ferguson &

The Hugh and Jane Ferguson Foundation

Supporting Sponsors


Muckleshoot Indian Tribe

Port Madison Enterprises

Additional Support

Contributors to the SAM Fund

Photo credits: Marianne Nicolson, Tracy Rector, Will Wilson. All images courtesy of the artists.


As the leading visual art institution in the Pacific Northwest, SAM draws on its global collections, powerful exhibitions, and dynamic programs to provide unique educational resources benefiting the Seattle region, the Pacific Northwest, and beyond. SAM was founded in 1933 with a focus on Asian art. By the late 1980s the museum had outgrown its original home, and in 1991 a new 155,000-square-foot downtown building, designed by Venturi, Scott Brown & Associates, opened to the public. The 1933 building was renovated and reopened as the Asian Art Museum in 1994. SAM’s desire to further serve its community was realized in 2007 with the opening of two stunning new facilities: the nine-acre Olympic Sculpture Park (designed by Weiss/Manfredi Architects)—a “museum without walls,” free and open to all—and the Allied Works Architecture designed 118,000-square-foot expansion of its main, downtown location, including 232,000 square feet of additional space built for future expansion. The Olympic Sculpture Park and SAM’s downtown expansion celebrated their tenth anniversary in 2017.

From a strong foundation of Asian art to noteworthy collections of African and Oceanic art, Northwest Coast Native American art, European and American art, and modern and contemporary art, the strength of SAM’s collection of approximately 25,000 objects lies in its diversity of media, cultures, and time periods.


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