When Referencing the Earth and Sky

Anita Fields, Osage / Mvskoke (Muscogee Creek) / American, born 1951
Muscogee (Creek)
Southern Plains



Ceramic, slips, gold luster glaze

Overall: 40 × 30 × 2 in. (101.6 × 76.2 × 5.1 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased through the Acquisition and Preservation of Native American Art Fund



Place Made: United States, North America


21st century

Object Name


Research Area

Native American

Native American: Plateau


Not on view


The Osage concept of duality is predicated on the division and balance between Earth and Sky. In When Referencing the Earth and Sky, Anita Fields communicates her understanding of this worldview, urging harmony between forces that may at first seem at odds. She borrows from the Euro-American tradition of landscape painting but shifts this typically two-dimensional genre into something more substantial through clay. Trained as a painter, Fields— who works almost exclusively in black and white— brushes on multiple layers of slips and incorporates texture in her ceramic works.

"On small bits of torn clay, I create repetitive textures by impressing objects that are meaningful to me. The fragments are layered onto sculpted clay forms, creating depth, design, and dimension. The objects used for impressions are varied and can be as simple as twigs, a favorite pair of earrings, ribbon work patterns from our traditional clothing, or imprints from a beaded purse." -- Anita Fields

From the 2021 exhibition Form & Relation: Contemporary Native Ceramics, curated by Jami C. Powell, Curator of Indigenous Art and Morgan E. Freeman, DAMLI Native American Art Fellow

Course History

ANTH 11/NAS 11, Ancient Native Americans, Madeleine McLeester, Fall 2020

PORT 8, Brazilian Portraits, Carlos Cortez Minchillo, Winter 2021

LACS 22.11, Latinx Intergenerational Literature, Marcela di Blasi, Spring 2021

ANTH 3.01, Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, Sienna Craig, Winter 2022

Exhibition History

Form & Relation: Contemporary Native Ceramics, Citrin Family, Engles Family, and Harteveldt Family Galleries, and Luise and Morton Kaish Gallery Stair, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 6, 2021–July 23, 2022.


The artist, Stillwater, Oklahoma; sold to present collection, 2019.

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