Silver and gold represent the new and the old as well as the precious mineral resources of Nevada. The years 2013–2014 mark the Silver Anniversary of the Nevada Arts Council’s Folklife Apprenticeship Program, which acknowledges one of the Silver State’s golden resources—its breadth of traditional artists, performers, and craftspeople that make Nevada home.
The exhibit, One Is Silver, the Other Is Gold: Celebrating 25 Years of Nevada Folklife Apprenticeships, features the work of twenty-two 20th and 21st century Nevada visual artists of the Apprenticeship Program who have passed on their skills in traditional arts dating back many generations or even centuries, but which are still vital and dynamic today. Art forms represented in the exhibit include: Polish wycinanki (papercutting), Oaxacan embroidery for traditional dance costumes, twisted horsehair rope and horse tack, Washoe basketry, Ukrainian pysanky (egg painting), and saddlemaking.
The Folklife Apprenticeship Program supports the preservation of Nevada’s cultural heritage and continuation of its traditional arts. While honoring the state’s master folk artists, apprenticeship grants encourage the “handing-down” of traditional art forms, such as crafts, music, food preparation and dance, to a new generation, or apprentices.
Each recognized master is encouraged to work with one or more dedicated apprentices so that their traditional art forms and personal contributions endure. The artists come from a range of tribal, ethnic, cultural, and occupational groups found throughout Nevada in both rural and urban communities. They include artists from among the indigenous Paiute, Shoshone, and Washoe peoples; and the skilled ranchers, miners, loggers, and railroad workers long a part of the state’s history. They also include more recent immigrants from all parts of North America, Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Asia – some who sought new lives and economic opportunities in the early part of the 20th Century, and others who arrived much more recently.
One Is Silver, the Other Is Gold artists include Hasna Akbas, Eddie Brooks, Fred Buckmaster, Clara Castillo, Sue Coleman, Florine Conway, Bernadine DeLorme, Wesley Dick, Charles Herring, Donald “Ike” Hicks, Linda Johnson-Comas, Barbara Lierly, JoAnn Martinez, Virginia McCuin, Edward McDade, Angie McGarva, Adam Nordwall, Vilma Parra, Maria Sanchez, Larry Schutte, Romeo Siguenza and Zoria Zetaruk.