Melissa Melero-Mosse, Here Place In Space II, 2020.

Melissa Melero-Mosse, Here Place In Space II, 2020.

Dec. 12, 2021


AH'-WAH-NEE Symposium & Opening Reception 

WHEN: Friday, November 5, 2021 (See the full schedule below)
WHERE: Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art Auditorium, Donna Beam Fine Art Gallery, and the Paul Harris Theatre, on the campus of UNLV, the traditional homelands of the Nuwuvi, Southern Paiute People.
COST: Free
ASL interpreters will be present throughout the symposium. Entry to the event is free and open to everyone.  Visitor parking on the UNLV campus is free starting at 1:00 pm.  Wear a mask.
[Directions to the museum] and  [More information about parking on campus]

AH’-WAH-NEE takes its title from the Paiute word for “balance.” The symposium invites Indigenous women artists from the Great Basin region and New Mexico to join us in a profound discussion about the connections between Indigenous feminist art practices, activism, and the land. Starting with a talk by the Chemehuevi photographer Cara Romero on November 4th, the symposium continues through a welcoming introduction, and two artist panels (on Paiute art, and on the uses of sculpture and performance). This event culminates in We Danced, We Sang, Until the Matron Came, a presentation and dance of resilience that will shine a light on the cultural impact of Native American Boarding Schools. The symposium will bridge decolonizing themes: Land Back, Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Art as Resilience, Indigenous Futurisms, and more. The symposium coincides with a group exhibition of the same name at the Donna Beam Gallery (Nov 1 - December 10). Both the symposium and the exhibition are curated by Las Vegas Paiute artist Fawn Douglas. [More information about the exhibition here]


  • 9:00 am - 10:00 am |  Introduction of AH’-WAH-NEE Exhibition & Symposium by Fawn Douglas. Welcome by Councilwoman Alfreda Mitre, Las Vegas Paiute Tribe. 
  • 10:00 am - 11:30 am | Artists Panel: A conversation with Paiute artists from the Great Basin region: Noelle Garcia, Loretta Burden, and Cara Romero. 
  • 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm | Artists Panel II: A conversation with three multi-disciplinary artists who use sculpture and performance in cultural story-telling: Fawn Douglas, Natani Notah, and Rose B. Simpson. 
  • 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm | See the AH’-WAH-NEE exhibition at Donna Beam Fine Art Gallery. The gallery will be open on November 5 from 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. (closed 4 - 5 p.m.). 
  • 7:30: pm - 8:30 pm | We Danced, We Sang, Until the Matron Came: A talk by Stacey Montooth, Executive Director of the State of Nevada Indian Commission, with visual art by Jean LaMarr, and a dance performance. 
  • 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm | UNLV Art Walk: Co-Presented by Susan N. Houston; UNLV's College of Fine Arts honors the Las Vegas arts community for its dedicated support of the arts and culture in Southern Nevada with its free annual Art Walk. [ More information about the Art Walk here.]

The Donna Beam Gallery and the Department of Art, in collaboration with the College of Fine Arts, present AH’-WAH-NEE (Paiute for ‘balance’), a momentous exhibition and symposium celebrating the beauty of Indigeneity through the art of local and regional Native American Women artists, who hold space on the campus of UNLV, the traditional homelands of the Nuwuvi, Southern Paiute People. AH’-WAH-NEE is curated by Fawn Douglas, Las Vegas artivist and graduate student in the Department of Art. Douglas is an Indigenous American artist, an enrolled member of the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe, and co-founder of the Nuwu Art + Activism Studios in downtown Las Vegas. “The voices of Indigenous women have always been valued amongst Indigenous communities,” Douglas underscores. “To share our words is a gift to those willing to listen. To share our stories through art is a gift from the spirit that will touch those willing to open their minds and hearts. AH’-WAH-NEE is our heart song.” The AH’-WAH-NEE exhibition is on view in the Donna Beam Gallery from November 1 through December 10, 2021, with the symposium taking place November 4 and 5, 2021. The participating artists are Loretta Burden, Noelle Garcia, Jean LaMarr, Melissa Melero-Moose, Natani Notah, Cara Romero, Rose B. Simpson, Roxanne Swentzell, Shelby Westika.

Project Partners 
UNLV College of Fine Arts, UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art, UNLV Paul Harris Theatre, UNLV Native American Alumni Club, UNLV Minority Serving Institution Student Council, UNLV American Indian Alliance, UNLV Department of History, UNLV Department of Anthropology, UNLV Interdisciplinary Gender & Ethnic Studies, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Nevada Museum of Art, The Nevada Indian Commission, The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, The Las Vegas Paiute Tribe, Southern Nevada Conservancy, Black Mountain Institute, Meow Wolf, Desert Arts Action Coalition, Nevada State Assemblymember, Howard Watts, WESTAF (the Western States Arts Federation)

Visit Us
The Barrick Museum of Art is open to the public Tuesday - Saturday, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. 

Find Us
The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art is located in the heart of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas campus. The museum is easily accessed from the west side of campus at the intersection of Harmon Avenue and University Center Drive. Drive east on East Harmon Ave until the road enters the campus and terminates in a parking lot. The Museum will be on your right, next to a desert landscape garden. Directions here.
Contact, 702-895-3381