Nuh-Mah-Nuh Daawina Akiin (Homelands of the Comanche People)

Monica Jo Raphael, Anishinaabe-Sicangu Lakota / American



Birch bark, natural and dyed porcupine quills, antique and 24k gold Czech seed beads, antique brass thimbles and hawk bells, black fire polished antique glass beads, dyed horse hair, and traditionally brain-tanned and smoked deer hide

Overall: 15 15/16 × 11 in. (40.5 × 27.9 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased through the Phyllis and Bertram Geller 1937 Memorial Fund

© Monica Jo Raphael



Place Made: United States, North America


21st century

Object Name

Personal Gear: Bag

Research Area

Native American

On view


Fifth-generation quillwork artist Monica Jo Raphael was raised in the village of Peshawbestown on the Grand Traverse Band Reservation, where she learned the traditional art form of quill and birchbark box-making. Depicting a colorful array of plants and animals including a scissortail, this purse is an homage to the place Raphael now calls home: the Wichita Mountains in southwest Oklahoma, the homelands of the Comanche Nation.

To create this purse, Raphael harvested porcupine quills and used spring birchbark harvested on the Lake Michigan shoreline, as well as traditional brain-tanned and smoke-tanned deer hide. Its visual cartography is grounded in the plants and animals of the Wichita Mountains. Using this material and her place-based knowledge, Raphael creates a nexus between the place she grew up in and the place she now lives in.

From the 2024 exhibition [Un]Mapping: Decolonial Cartographies of Place, curated by Beatriz Yanes Martinez, Hood Museum Board of Advisors Mutual Learning Fellow, Curatorial and Exhibitions

Exhibition History

[Un]Mapping: Decolonial Cartographies of Place, Harteveldt Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, June 8 -November 3, 2024.


Miikawaadad by Monica Jo Raphael, Apache, Oklahoma; sold to present collection, 2022.

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