Multicultural Art





"Tribal Existence"

Brad J. Shields

November 2014


In celebration of American Indian Heritage Month 2014, the MSU-N Multicultural Center is exhibiting the surrealistic art work of Native artist and MSU-N graduate Brad J. Shields. His piece is titled “Tribal Existence.” This is a colorful canvas that can be displayed in either portrait or landscape orientation. Shields says the piece is a look into the first century of Indian perspective on surrealism. It depicts a recurring dream he had …“molded through the mind of a spiritually anointing mix of modern-future primitive tribal existence.” The buildings on one corner represent the urban part of Indian life. On the opposite one, the teepee with the circle inside symbolizes the center of the universe for Natives. However, it is the center of the piece that draws viewer’s attention: there are two figures of Natives and a monster of some sort. Shield adds, “I used to have this recurring dream that a demon was going to take me, but thanks to my grandfather’s teachings and because I’m very connected to my ways, that demon could never take me.” The piece also includes other Native motifs such as deer antlers and a feather. “Art comes in all forms,” Shields concludes. Everyone is invited to visit the Multicultural Center and admire Shield’s art. The MSUN Office of Diversity Awareness and Multicultural Programs (ODAMP) invites local and regional artists to exhibit their pieces, preferably those that have some link to multicultural themes. For more information, contact or call (406) 265-3589.