News

Newly discovered Edward Curtis Alaskan photos will appear in Muskegon

The Muskegon Museum of Art (MMA) presents Edward S. Curtis: Unpublished Alaska, the Lost Photographs September 16, 2021 through January 9, 2022. This first-time public showing features images made from recently discovered original negatives by Edward Sherriff Curtis. Unpublished Alaska features over 100 images along with excerpts from the personal journals of Curtis and his daughter Beth Curtis Magnuson describing their harrowing adventures in the Bering Sea.

Background

On June 8, 1927, Curtis, accompanied by daughter Beth and newly employed Stewart C. Eastwood, set sail on the steamer ship Victoria towards Nome, Alaska. The purpose of their voyage was to complete the photography and research for the final, 20th volume of Curtis’s masterwork, The North American Indian. Begun in 1898, The North American Indian was the defining passion of Curtis’s life, an attempt to record, in writing and photography, the lives of the indigenous peoples of the southwestern, western, and northwestern United States. This trip, planned for a single season, would be the final voyage to complete his epic quest. Curtis took hundreds of images on his journey, only part of which were published. The rest sat, unseen, passed down through the family until today.

The Book

This exhibition accompanies the 2021 publication of the complete journals by Curtis’s descendants John and Coleen Graybill in the book Edward Curtis: Unpublished Alaska. The book is available to purchase at the MMA Store or by phone at 231.720.2580.

Opening Event Sept. 16

Reception 5:00 pm | Book Signing 6:00 pm | Lecture 7:00 pm

The Graybills will visit the MMA on Thursday, September 16 to sign books and to give a lecture as part of an exhibition opening event. The evening starts with a reception at 5:00 pm. The event is free and open to the public. Reservations are not required.

The MMA is open 11:00 am – 5:00 pm daily, 11:00 am – 8:00 am on Thursdays, and closed Mondays. Visit muskegonartmuseum.org for more information.