Thesis

The Stories in the Seams: The Life and Work of Richard Kastl

The Stories in the Seams is a multi layered narrative woven from relationships between individuals, memory and the archive. This thesis recounts, through the literary device of the creative memoir, selected aspects of the life and work of Osage artist Richard Kastl (1943-2013). It is a firsthand account, arrived at by a experimental process that evolved from a preliminary engagement with oral history into a personal narrative that provides provenance and historical context for a unique collection of artwork. The narrative is constructed by a successive overlay of storytelling, image making, memory writing and finally an engagement with archival source material from private collections. It engages with a practice of orality particularly suited to the demands of an unconventional research situation that culminated in an artistic collaboration. The historical relevance of the narrative lays in the documentation of an extraordinary contemporary native artist whose work and the stories he told about it manifest themes of indigenous sovereignty, cultural revitalization, American Indian activism and an unrelenting advocacy of the value of the individual.

Thesis (M.A., History (Public History))--California State University, Sacramento, 2015.

The Stories in the Seams is a multi layered narrative woven from relationships between individuals, memory and the archive. This thesis recounts, through the literary device of the creative memoir, selected aspects of the life and work of Osage artist Richard Kastl (1943-2013). It is a firsthand account, arrived at by a experimental process that evolved from a preliminary engagement with oral history into a personal narrative that provides provenance and historical context for a unique collection of artwork. The narrative is constructed by a successive overlay of storytelling, image making, memory writing and finally an engagement with archival source material from private collections. It engages with a practice of orality particularly suited to the demands of an unconventional research situation that culminated in an artistic collaboration. The historical relevance of the narrative lays in the documentation of an extraordinary contemporary native artist whose work and the stories he told about it manifest themes of indigenous sovereignty, cultural revitalization, American Indian activism and an unrelenting advocacy of the value of the individual.

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