Dr. Jessica R. Metcalfe, PhD, American Indian Studies; Creator, Beyond Buckskin
From Beyond Buckskin:
“Beyond Buckskin is a website and business dedicated to promoting and selling Native American-made fashion. It is headed up by Dr. Jessica R. Metcalfe (Turtle Mountain Chippewa) who holds a PhD in American Indian Studies, with an emphasis on art, education, and culture. She wrote her doctoral dissertation on Native American designers of high fashion, a project that would steer her towards a lifelong journey of supporting, promoting, and working with Native American artists.
In 2009, she launched the Beyond Buckskin blog in an effort to share her doctoral research with more people outside of academia. Interest in the blog grew and led to the development of a business, the Beyond Buckskin Boutique, which launched online in 2012, and the brick and mortar retail shop opened its doors in 2016 on the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation, Metcalfe’s home community. You can read more about the Boutique at this link.
In addition to hosting and producing fashion shows and arts events, Metcalfe continues to share her journey, challenges, and successes through workshops, presentations, and keynote addresses. She can be reached at this link.
Jamie Okuma, Artist & Fashion Designer
From Jamie Okuma:
“Jamie Okuma is Luiseno, Shoshone-Bannock, Wailaki, and Okinawan who is also an enrolled member of the La Jolla band of Indians in Southern California where she lives and works. She specializes in one-of-a-kind pieces that are hand-executed exclusively by the artist herself in all details of process, while also designing ready-to-wear fashions.
As early as Okuma can remember her life has been in the art world in one way or another. Her mother Sandra was a graphic artist and worked at MCA records when Jamie was a child. During her time there she produced album covers for Lynard Skynyrd and Cher to name a few.
After high school, Okuma took graphic design classes at Palomar College in San Marcos, CA before attending the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe NM. From the age of 18, she has been a professional artist completely devoted to her art. Exhibiting her work at the Heard Indian Art Market in Phoenix, AZ, and at the Santa Fe Indian Art Market in Santa Fe NM. She has garnered a total of seven Best in Show awards. Four from the Heard, and three from the Santa Fe Indian Market. One of only two artists to achieve this distinction.
Since that time her work has been shown in Germany, Australia, France and many art institutions and museums throughout the United States. Including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Okuma has work in the permanent collections of The Minneapolis Institute of Art, The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, The Denver Art Museum and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian.”
Keri Ataumbi, Jewelry Designer, Ataumbi Metals
From Ataumbi Metals:
“Raised on the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming, Keri Ataumbi was exposed to both traditional Native American aesthetics and contemporary art theory and practice from an early age. Her Kiowa mother ran a trading post and her Italian-American father is famous for his bronze sculptures. Ataumbi and her sister were encouraged to pursue their individual interests in art.
Ataumbi attended Rhode Island School of Design before moving to Santa Fe in 1990. After moving to Santa Fe she worked as a landscape designer while attending the Institute of American Indian Arts and eventually received a BFA in painting with a minor in art history from the College of Santa Fe. She currently lives and works in the Cerrillos Hills outside Santa Fe.”