Dave McGary (American, 1958-2013), Walks Among the Stars, 2006, bronze with patina and paint, edition 2/9, 76 x 68 x 72 inches, Gift of Lisa and Jack McLaine, 12-2011
Dave McGary is known for his realistic renditions of Native Americans, and follows a long portrait tradition in American art. This sculpture depicts a late nineteenth-century Lakota woman displaying the heirloom star quilt, cascading behind her. This detailed rendering of fringe and fabric is a great example of the artist’s mastery of cast bronze.
As the Indian Wars ended, Northern Plains tribes faced relocation to reservations, and Sioux women made patchwork quilts to replace traditional buffalo robes. Today, the star quilt is a symbol of prestige, sentiment, belonging, and status within Lakota culture and remains an integral part of many tribal ceremonies.