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Northern Plains Indian Artist in Residence Exhibition on Display in John A. Day Gallery

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Reyna Hernandez wearing a mask with her arms crossed. She stands in front of one of the Vermillion community murals. NPIAR Reyna Hernandez’s exhibition “How to Open a Body to the Stars” is on display in the John A. Day Gallery Dec. 13-Jan. 14. Photo courtesy of Aaron C. Packard Productions.
VERMILLION, S.D. – The University of South Dakota is proud to announce the exhibition of the 2021 Northern Plains Indian Artist In Residence (NPIAR), Reyna Hernandez. “How to Open a Body to the Stars” is open in the John A. Day Gallery from Dec. 13, 2021-Jan. 14, 2022. A closing reception will be held Jan. 14 from 5-7 p.m. with an artist talk at 6 p.m.
The NPIAR is part of the USD Contemporary Native Arts Program (CNAP), which also includes the Oscar Howe Summer Arts Institute (OHSAI) and the Oscar Howe Curatorial Fellowship.
Hernandez (Yankton Sioux) received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting and a Bachelor of Arts in English from USD. Hernandez was the lead artist for the Vermillion, South Dakota, community mural projects “Eúŋkičhetupi” (Come Back to Life) and “Wanahča” (To Blossom). She was a guest curator for “Bring Her Home: Sacred Womxn of Resistance, All My Relations Arts,” in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and she has participated in numerous group exhibitions, including “Articles of a Treaty,” in the Akta Lakota Museum, located in Chamberlain, South Dakota.
Reyna has been part of the CNAP program as a student of the OHSAI and the Oscar Howe Curatorial Fellowship.
“My interest in this opportunity is rooted in my desire to build upon the multi-faceted ways in which Dakota women artists occupy contemporary spaces and contribute to the preservation of cultural knowledge through the artistry of our matriarchs,” said Hernandez.
The Northern Plains Indian Artist Residency (NPIAR) program supports emerging and mid-career Native artists to create a new body or work, integrate new media, methodologies or technologies with traditional Native arts practices, history and culture.
The gallery is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., excluding holidays. For more information about this exhibition and upcoming events, please email Amy Fill at or call 605-658-3437.
USD’s College of Fine Arts encourages students to pursue their chosen professional field in art, music or theater through their study with nationally recognized faculty who are working professionals. Students learn and grow to be professional fine artists with great job potential anywhere in the country. The college offers opportunities for additional real-world experiences through work with guest artists, study tours abroad and opportunities at the National Music Museum and the University Art Galleries on the Vermillion campus and the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park. The college brings more than 80 guests artists to campus annually to work with students.
Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.


Hanna DeLange
USD News


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