Happy First Birthday to the James Museum!

Happy First Birthday to the James Museum!


The Cultural Connections of Edward S. Curtis The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art displays the images of early 20th century photographer Edward S. Curtis, who traveled the country to document “vanishing” Native American cultures. Curtis’ vivid portraits and scenes from daily life captured a humanity and a romantic view that appealed to the Anglo-American public of the day. His respect for Native people was ahead of his time, and the relationships he nurtured allowed for information gathering that would have otherwise been lost to history. Step back in time to explore tribal traditions and early photographic processes through Curtis’ lens, with premier images and masterworks on loan from the Robb and Susan Hough collection.  thejamesmuseum.org.

The James Museum will offer a weekend of special tours, activities, and talks to commemorate the one-year anniversary of its opening, including a special dance performance by five-time world champion Native American hoop dancer Tony Duncan. 

The special slate of programs April 27-28 and are included with admission; events are free for members but seating is limited for the talks and the dance performance so reservations are required.

Jamboree at the James The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art invites members and potential future members to celebrate their first anniversary by kicking up their heels and enjoying Western dance instruction by Swing Time, live music by Cadillac Cowboys and a specialty menu by Dr. BBQ. Dress code includes blue jeans, cowboy boots & hats, western shirts or other gear that evokes the Wild West. Saturday, April 27, 6-10 p.m., 150 Central Ave, St. Petersburg. $250 per person, $10,000 for sponsor table. Click here for information and tickets.

Duncan, an internationally acclaimed dancer and musician, has appeared on the Billboard Music Awards, the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, the White House, and more. He will perform and then lead a discussion on the traditional dance form, which originated with the Taos Pueblo culture of New Mexico. His performance takes place on April 28 and 1 p.m. 

Five-time world champion Native American Hoop Dancer Tony Duncan will bring his world-renowned talents to the James Museum as part of a weekend of festivities to mark its 1-year anniversary. Duncan will also lead a discussion on this traditional dance form following his performance. The event will take place on Sunday, April 28 at 1 p.m. in Mesa Hall.

Duncan (Apache/Arikara/Hidatsa/Mandan) uses hoops to create images and shapes that represent the many beautiful creations on earth. The stories told through Duncan’s work celebrates the lives of his Native American ancestors as a way of honoring their individual stories. 

The Hoop Dance originates from the Taos Pueblo of New Mexico, as a way of healing. The modern form of hoop dancing has become an intertribal dance and is now shared at social gatherings and powwows alike. The Hoop Dance teaches us that we must respect and honor all of life as we are all connected in this great circle of life. 

Duncan is an internationally acclaimed dancer and musician who has appeared on the Billboard Music Awards, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, the White House, and more.

Duncan’s performance and discussion is included with museum admission. Seating is limited. To reserve a seat at this event, click this link: https://visit.thejamesmuseum.org/1816/1817. 

In addition to Duncan’s appearance, the weekend includes other exciting offerings including:

  • an artist talk by Billy Schenck, known across the globe as one of the originators of the contemporary Western pop art movement. Schenck, visiting from Santa Fe, New Mexico, will share stories about his life and work.
  • a discussion by Allen and Patty Eckman, creators of exquisitely detailed, handmade cast paper sculptures that have been exhibited in museums and galleries around the country. As inventors and masters of this unique art form, they are internationally recognized for their work. The Eckmans will discuss their cast paper method and the evolution of their art over three decades. 
  • guided tours featuring highlights of the “What is Western Art?” collection, led by knowledgeable and engaging docents. The tour provides a 45-minute overview of Western art, focusing on select works throughout the museum. 
  • a historical and cultural look at the Art of Native American Jewelry. Join a docent for a look at the history and cultural traditions of Native American adornment, including the materials and processes used to create jewelry, and the commercial side of the trade. This 45-minute tour highlights select works throughout the museum and in the Jewel Box.

To view a complete listing of events and times, please visit thejamesmuseum.org/anniversary.

“Throughout the year, The James has distinguished itself as an interactive, thoughtful, and thought-provoking destination for art enthusiasts and budding artists,” said The James Museum Director Bernice Chu. “Our special anniversary weekend is no different. We will have something for every member of the family and look forward to celebrating this wonderful milestone with our community that has supported us with a sense of excitement that is unmatched.”

About the James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art

The James Museum contains over 400 works of art selected from over 3,000 pieces acquired by Tom and Mary James over their 50 years of art collecting. The 88,000 square foot museum includes over 30,000 square feet of gallery space; a double height lobby with water feature; a Native American jewelry collection; 6,000 square feet of rental event space supporting both large events and break-out sessions; a 125-seat auditorium; a commercial catering kitchen; and a museum shop and café. Planned programming includes special exhibitions in a variety of genres, artist talks and demonstrations, art classes, docent tours and children’s activities. Through exhibitions and education programs, The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art emphasizes the core values of art that moved Tom and Mary James: action, fortitude, heritage and integrity. 

Become a Creative Pinellas Supporter