Travois is hosting a juried art exhibition series featuring North American Indigenous artists in 2017 and 2018 at our headquarters in the heart of metro Kansas City.

The Crossroads Arts District is the site of one of the country’s strongest First Friday events and attracts up to 10,000 people from across the heartland.

Our mission is to support and promote American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian artists through juried exhibition.

Our vision is to see Native artists more prominently featured and powerfully supported in metropolitan Kansas City.


Upcoming First Friday: August 3

Featuring “A Fanciful Escapade” by Gina Herrera (Pueblo of Tesuque)

Gina Herrera (Pueblo of Tesuque) was raised in Chicago and currently resides in California. In her artist statement, Herrera said: “While my heritage incorporates the Tesuque Pueblo and Costa Rica, my strongest affinity is to nature. While serving in Iraq, amid the devastation of combat, my visceral reaction to miles of mountainous trash heaps, the evidence of systematic yet unconscious destruction of our planet led me to question my own practices. I began to build assemblages out of discarded and natural objects. I am engaged in an aesthetic and spiritual ritual to channel and honor Mother Earth. I constantly gather materials, finding inspiration in my surroundings. Like a scavenger, I play an interventional role in removing garbage from the landscape, preventing further damage. I am also drawn to natural materials and organic forms. My process is meditative and intuitive. Figures emerge, in gravity defying poses on the brink of movement, alive with possibility. Their haunting spiritual presence reminds us they have not gone back to the earth but asks us to question the choices we make in our daily existence.”

For Travois First Fridays, Herrera’s exhibition will feature large sculptural works.

Herrera holds a BFA in art education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. While she was a student, she was deployed overseas in support of several war contingencies with the United States Army. Once her final tour was complete, she obtained her MFA from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. As a graduate student, she was awarded a Provost Fellowship, an MFA scholarship and was nominated for the Joan Mitchell Foundation MFA Grant Program in 2012. Herrera received a full Native American Residency Fellowship from the Harpo Foundation to attend the Vermont Studio Center in 2013. Herrera has exhibited extensively in California and nationally and has received awards: she is a six-time ArtSlant Prize Showcase Winner, she received a Merit Award from Art Kudos and received an Award of Excellence from Manhattan Arts International.

Herrera’s dedication to service extends to all aspects of her professional life – from her 20+ years in the military to educating and inspiring the next generation as an art teacher at Arvin High School and as an adjunct professor at Bakersfield College. Learn more on her websiteFacebook and LinkedIn.

Join us Friday, Aug. 3, from 6-8 p.m.

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Future exhibitions

Thank you to all of the artists who applied to our call! Please read about selected artists and our exhibition schedule here.


Exhibition jury

  • Gina Adams (Ojibwa-Lakota descent), contemporary hybrid artist and faculty at Naropa University
  • Bruce Hartman, executive director of the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Gaylord Torrence, senior curator of American Indian art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
  • Thomas Farris (Otoe-Missouria, Cherokee), manager of Exhibit C Gallery
  • Sherry Leedy, artist and Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art
  • Rachael Cozad, Rachael Cozad Fine Art, and former director of Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art; Madison Group Fine Art Appraisals
  • Norman Akers (Osage Nation), artist and associate professor and director of graduate studies at the University of Kansas
  • America Meredith (Cherokee Nation), artist and publishing editor of First American Art Magazine

Exhibition press

In Kansas City’s Crossroads, unusual space spotlights untraditional American Indian art

American Indian art joins Crossroads First Fridays

Alcatraz occupation inspires architecture prof’s KC exhibition

Travois First Fridays featuring Chris T. Cornelius for March 2 exhibition (p. 38)


Past exhibitions

Read summaries about past exhibitions here.

June 1 – “Life Is Breaktaking” by Cannupa Hanska Luger

May 4 – “Rituals” by Porfirio Gutiérrez

March 2 – “Domiciles” by Chris T. Cornelius

Dec. 1 – Travois Design and JT Daniels

Nov. 3 – Maura Garcia

Oct. 6 – Matika Wilbur

Sept. 1 – Anthony Oropeza