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The James T. Bialac Native American Art Collection:

Selected Works



Sept. 22 - Dec. 30, 2012


University of Oklahoma President David L. Boren announced in March 2010 that the university had received one of the most important private collections of Native American art in the country. The gift came to OU from the private collection of James T. Bialac of Arizona. The multi-million dollar collection of more than 4,000 works represents indigenous cultures across North America, especially the Pueblos of the Southwest, the Navajo, the Hopi, many of the tribes of the Northern and Southern Plains and the Southeastern tribes.


On September 22, the FJJMA will open two new exhibitions devoted to the James T. Bialac Native American Art Collection. Additionally, the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History, the Donald E. Pray Law Library at the College of Lawand the Charles M. Russell Center for the Study of Art of the American West each will showcase works from the collection, bringing a combined exhibition space of approximately 40,000 square feet dedicated to the collection on the University of Oklahoma Norman campus. The Sam Noble Museum opens a second exhibition October 5; please visit their website at for more information.


Selected Works examines the collecting passion of James T. Bialac. The breadth of Bialac’s interests is represented in a wide range of media, including paintings, sculpture, kachina, textiles and ceramics. Featured artists include Helen Hardin, Fritz Scholder, Dan Namingha, Michael Kabotie and Tony Abeyta.


The exhibition opens with free admission Saturday, September 22. A community celebration is scheduled at the FJJMA Sunday, September 23, 1-6 pm, featuring artist demonstrations by Tony Abeyta, Anita Fields, Ben Harjo, Linda Lomahaftewa and America Meredith. A special performance by the OU School of Dance, created by professors Derrick Minter and Austin Hartel, will feature choreography inspired by works from the James T. Bialac Native American Art Collection. The opening celebration is free and open to the public.


Read more about the exhibition here.


Check out all of the events happening this month!


See more of the Bialac collection in the Donald E. Pray Law Library at the College of Law.

Download our gallery guide here.


If you'd like to see videos from this event, please click here.






Helen Hardin (U.S., Santa Clara, 1943-1984)

Winter Awakening of the O-Khoo-Wah, 1972

Acrylic on board, 143⁄4 x 291⁄2 in.

James T. Bialac Native American Art Collection, 2010 ©

The Helen Hardin Estate




Andrew Tsihnahjinnie (U.S., Navajo, 1916-2000)

Slayer of Enemy Gods - Nayeinezani, 1962

Watercolor on paper, 261⁄2 x 191⁄2 in.

James T. Bialac Native American Art Collection, 2010