Illuminate and Celebrate
The culture and traditions of a people are most vividly represented and communicated in their artistic expressions. Our mission is to serve as a window into the art of the Native American peoples who first settled North America tens of thousands of years ago, with our main focus the art and people of the American Southwest. We try to faithfully tell the stories of these peoples, whose creative souls are embodied in each piece art.
Authenticity and Support
As an art gallery, we act as an intermediary between artists and art lovers, and facilitate fair and honest transactions. We have a dual responsibility to accurately represent the artists and their works, and also to provide assurance to art lovers that what they acquire for their collections is authentic and true. We spend countless hours doing research on specific pieces, particularly those pieces which are not acquired directly from the artists, or those pieces for which the artist is no longer with us. We ask a lot of questions, both from published sources and from our network of fellow gallery owners. We are strong believers in the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-644) which strictly regulates and enforces authenticity of Native American arts and crafts and attempts to curtail the massive importation of fake and misrepresented items.
As part of our mission, we also financially support Native American organizations that build strength and knowledge among their artists. We believe a strong and vital artist community benefits not only the artists directly involved, but also other members of their communities. We are business members of IPCC (Indian Pueblo Cultural Center), SWAIA (Southwestern Association for Indian Arts), SAR (the School for Advanced Research), and ATADA (Authentic Tribal Art Dealers Association), and also support the Adopt a Native Elder program, Zuni Pueblo MainStreet Festival, The Zuni Show, and a number of museums in the Southwest which highlight Native American art and artists. We try to spread the word through multiple social media outlets about ways in which people can show their direct or indirect support for this vibrant piece of our North American heritage.
About the Dancing Rabbit Gallery
Our Background and Story
The Dancing Rabbit Gallery legacy continues…
Since my parents began the gallery in 1980, my family has had an opportunity to expand our deep and passionate love of Southwestern Native American art and artifacts. Four generations of my family, starting with my great-grandmother in the 1920’s, have traveled to the Southwest and embraced the history and culture of the Native American peoples in their paintings, pottery, baskets, weavings, and of course, jewelry. The first acquisition (of which we have records) was a piece of pottery purchased from Maria Martinez in 1934.
Summer vacations always found my family visiting with relatives in Oklahoma and spending time traveling and exploring the Southwest – New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Utah. I grew up surrounded by the wonderful pieces my parents purchased and collected from their friends at the pueblos, from interesting out-of-the-way shops, and from various museum collections. I eagerly read the books in my mother’s library about the people, the pueblos, and the history of the American Southwest. While attending Oklahoma State University, I included American Indian literature in my studies. Since that time, my own reference library has grown to several hundred volumes, which I use extensively in researching new acquisitions.
I am proud to continue in my parents’ footsteps by offering quality artifacts from their private collection, as well as beautiful items from both historic and current artists. We continue to locate additional items from estate sales and other sources as well. I hope you will find many items of educational interest, as well as significant pieces to add to your collection. And if you don’t find what you are seeking with us, let us know and we will try to connect you with one or more reputable gallery owners who may have that item.
Michael and I published our first book about the culture, art and people of the Southwest. Tales of the Dancing Rabbit recounts our adventures out and about visiting with artists in the pueblos, enjoying museums and historical sites, as well as a few family memories. It offers a unique opportunity to learn more about a fascinating culture and people in 84 short stories. Recently we followed that book with another, New Tales of The Dancing Rabbit, which has even more stories about the culture, people, historic locations, and serendipitous discoveries of the American Southwest.
To support these education efforts, we also published two small books – Innovations in Native American Pottery and Innovations in Native America Jewelry – with accompanying online exhibitions, during 2019. We have three more small books on Fine Art, Sculpture, and Zuni Carvings and Fetishes in progress and expect those to be available as well in the very near future.
The Dancing Rabbit Gallery Our Fortieth Birthday
The start of this new decade also marks the fortieth birthday of The Dancing Rabbit Gallery. The year 2020 is (to us, at least) The Year of The Dancing Rabbit. We will mark this anniversary with a year-long celebration, featuring a number of events and activities on our website. With this birthday celebration, we pay homage to my parents, who began the Gallery in May, 1980, but also renew our commitment to education about Native American cultures and arts as well as giving back and supporting Native American artists to the extent our small Gallery can.
The Dancing Rabbit Gallery Leadership Team
Katie McClain Richarme formed a leadership team, consisting of her husband Michael and her two younger siblings, Maggie McClain Pryor and Jamie McClain, to assist with strategic direction of the Gallery and to act as a sounding board for ideas. This Board of Directors was formed in 2012 when the Gallery went online-only, and has contributed significantly to the success enjoyed by the Gallery.
Katie is a lifelong educator, talented professional potter, and Dancing Rabbit Gallery Board Chair. It is her unbridled passion for Native American culture and arts that drives the mission and direction of the Gallery. Her acknowledged expertise in Native American pottery and jewelry has resulted in her being selected as a Judge at numerous National Native American art events.
Michael is a retired corporate marketing executive, serving as both Dancing Rabbit Gallery Board Member and chief operating officer for the Gallery. He is also a full time University professor teaching Marketing to upcoming generations of business leaders.
Maggie is a successful small business owner, breeding and showing her beloved Australian Shepherd dogs through Broadway Kennels. She has shown at Westminster, AKC Nationals, and a host of regional and local shows, where her champion dogs routinely win the highest ribbons. Her registered puppies are sold internationally. Maggie serves as a Dancing Rabbit Gallery Board Member.
Jamie is, in all candor, a cowboy born about a hundred years too late. He grew up in cowboy boots and riding a horse, spending countless hours in competitive rodeo events and even more countless hours recovering from broken bones due to those events. Earlier in life, he was a trail boss for an authentic cattle drive lasting several months from Fort Worth along the traditional Chisholm Trail. He is currently the Associate Pastor of a cowboy church in Texas, and enjoys managing the cowboy church arena and rodeo events as well as giving a horseback sermon from time to time in the arena. Jamie also serves as a Dancing Rabbit Gallery Board Member.