The Smithsonian Institution Festival of American Folklife, held annually since 1967 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., was renamed the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in 1998. The materials collected here document the planning, production, and execution of the annual Festival, produced by the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage (1999-present) and its predecessor offices (1967-1999). An overview of the entire Festival records group is available here: Smithsonian Folklife Festival records.
Scope and Contents note:
This collection documents the planning, production, and execution of the 1992 Festival of American Folklife. Materials may include photographs, audio recordings, motion picture film and video recordings, notes, production drawings, contracts, memoranda, correspondence, informational materials, publications, and ephemera. Such materials were created during the Festival on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., as well as in the featured communities, before or after the Festival itself.
Arranged in 5 series.
Series 1: Program Books, Festival Publications, and Ephemera
Series 2: The Changing Soundscape in Indian Country
Series 3: Creativity and Resistance: Maroon Culture in the Americas
Series 4: New Mexico
Series 5: Workers at the White House
The Festival of American Folklife, held annually since 1967 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., was renamed the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in 1998.
The 1992 Festival of American Folklife was produced by the Smithsonian Center for Folklife Programs and Cultural Studies and cosponsored by the National Park Service.
For more information, see Smithsonian Folklife Festival records.
The Columbus Quincentenary that was commemorated in 1992 gave pause to reflect on the forces that over the preceding 500 years had shaped social life in the Americas. The Festival programs on New Mexico, Maroons, and American Indian musics illustrated important historical and ongoing processes through which communities establish cultural identities in complex and dynamic social circumstances.
"The Changing Soundscape in Indian Country," produced jointly with the National Museum of the American Indian, explored ways that Indian musicians and their communities creatively adapted elements from the musical traditions brought to this continent from Europe, Africa, and elsewhere. Although many of the forms of this Indian music are non-Indian in origin, the themes and performance styles clearly address Indian experience and aesthetic expectations. In their creative hands, as Festival visitors could experience first-hand, external musical influences became part of the self-definition of Indian identity and trenchant commentary on what had been happening in "Indian Country" over the past five centuries.
Nowhere is the connection between creativity and self-definition more clear than in the cultural identities of contemporary Maroon peoples, whose ancestors escaped plantation slavery in the Americas and founded independent societies. Faced with the task of constructing and defending their positions, Maroons creatively defined themselves from a variety of sources. While their political institutions, expressive arts, religions, and other social forms were predominantly African in origin, they drew from a broad range of African cultures, and from European and Native American cultures as well. Much of the aesthetic component of Maroon cultures - their vibrant traditions of verbal and visual arts, shared with Festival visitors on the National Mall - encourages the cohesiveness of their society and voices themes that embody common experience and interest.
The Spanish Conquest established the Western Hemisphere's European presence and its most widely spoken language. While the original conquerors' culture did not value the Native cultures it encountered, over the centuries segments of Hispanic and Native American and later English-speaking and other populations engaged one another, by necessity, in ways that gave rise to today's rich array of cultural identities. New Mexico's distinctive cultural landscape took shape in this way, represented by some peoples who sustain their cultural identities through centuries-old combinations of Indian and European forms of thought and action, and by others whose basis of identity lies in reaffirming the wisdom and relevance of ancestral ways. Festival visitors could witness how, in New Mexico, cultural identity reflects the changes that continue to be wrought from the varieties of these social encounters.
The 1992 Festival also marked the 200th anniversary of the White House. Not a king's palace but rather "the people's house," the White House is at once national symbol, executive office and conference center, ceremonial setting, museum, tourist attraction, and family residence. The Festival revealed the culture of White House workers, who supported this broad array of functions over a span of history shaped by remarkable events, people and social change. White House workers had made the White House work with their labor and dedication. The Festival's living exhibition presented some of the skills, experiences, and values through which they gave shape to their occupational identities, calling visitors' attention to an important human component of the 200 year institutional history.
The 1992 Festival took place during two five-day weeks (June 25-29 and July 2-5) between Madison Drive and Jefferson Drive and between 10th Street and 13th Street, south of the National Museum of American History and the National Museum of Natural History (see site plan).
The 1992 Program Book included schedules and participant lists for each program; keynote essays provided background on the Festival and each of the four programs, with shorter essays spotlighting particular traditions and offering a forum for statements from Maroon spokespeople.
The Festival was co-presented by the Smithsonian Institution and National Park Service and organized by the Center for Folklife Programs & Cultural Studies.
Center for Folklife Programs & Cultural Studies
Richard Kurin, Director; Diana Parker, Festival Director; Anthony Seeger, Director, Smithsonian/Folkways Recordings; Peter Seitel, Senior Folklorist; Thomas Vennum, Jr., Senior Ethnomusicologist; Olivia Cadaval, Director, Quincentenary Projects; Richard Kennedy, Program Analyst; Vivian Chen, Diana Baird N'Diaye, Folklorists; Ken Bilby, Marjorie Hunt, Curators; Carla Borden, John Franklin, Program Managers; Arlene L. Reiniger, Program Specialist; Jeffrey Place, Archivist; Betty Belanus, Frank Proschan, Nicholas Spitzer, Research Associates
Folklife Advisory Council
Roger Abrahams, Jacinto Arias, Jane Beck, Pat Jasper, Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, Bernice Reagon, John Roberts, Carol Robertson, Gilbert Sprauve, John Tchen, Ricardo Trimillos, Carlos Vélez-Ibáñez
National Park Service
James M. Ridenour, Director; Robert G. Stanton, Regional Director, National Capital Region
Forms Part Of:
Smithsonian Folklife Festival records: 1992 Festival of American Folklife forms part of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival records .
Smithsonian Folklife Festival records
Smithsonian Folklife Festival records: Papers
1967 Festival of American Folklife records - [Ongoing]
Related Archival Materials note:
Within the Rinzler Archives, related materials may be found in various collections such as the Ralph Rinzler papers and recordings, the Lily Spandorf drawings, the Diana Davies photographs, the Robert Yellin photographs, and the Curatorial Research, Programs, and Projects collection. Additional relevant materials may also be found in the Smithsonian Institution Archives concerning the Division of Performing Arts (1966-1983), Folklife Program (1977-1980), Office of Folklife Programs (1980-1991), Center for Folklife Programs and Cultural Studies (1991-1999), Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage (1999-present), and collaborating Smithsonian units, as well as in the administrative papers of key figures such as the Secretary and respective deputies. Users are encouraged to consult relevant finding aids and to contact Archives staff for further information.
Access by appointment only. Where a listening copy or viewing copy has been created, this is indicated in the respective inventory; additional materials may be accessible with sufficient advance notice and, in some cases, payment of a processing fee. Older papers are housed at a remote location and may require a minimum of three weeks' advance notice and payment of a retrieval fee. Certain formats such as multi-track audio recordings and EIAJ-1 videoreels (1/2 inch) may not be accessible. Contact the Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archives and Collections at 202-633-7322 or email@example.com for additional information.
Copyright and other restrictions may apply. Generally, materials created during a Festival are covered by a release signed by each participant permitting their use for personal and educational purposes; materials created as part of the fieldwork leading to a Festival may be more restricted. We permit and encourage such personal and educational use of those materials provided digitally here, without special permissions. Use of any materials for publication, commercial use, or distribution requires a license from the Archives. Licensing fees may apply in addition to any processing fees.
Unrestricted research access on site by appointment. Unprotected photographs must be handled with gloves.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Copyright restrictions. Consult the Archives Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-633-3270.
Paul Ellington, executor, is represented by:
Richard J.J. Scarola, Scarola Ellis LLP, 888 Seventh Avenue, 45th Floor, New York, New York 10106. Telephone (212) 757-0007 x 235; Fax (212) 757-0469; email: email@example.com; www.selaw.com; www.ourlawfirm.com.
Postcard image of a formal portrait of African, European, and Indian musicians. Text on front reads: "200 - St-LOUIS (Senegal); Les membres actifs de la Lyre Municipale de St. Louis." On front: "P. Tacher, photo. St-Louis." Text on verso reads: "Carte Postale; Tous les Pays etrangers n'acceptent pas la correspondance au recto (se renseigner a la Poste); Correspondance; Adresse." Handwritten, and dated, message and address on verso. Stamp and three postmarks on verso.
Image indexed by negative number.
Use of original records requires an appointment. Contact Archives staff for more details.
Permission to reproduce images from the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives must be obtained in advance. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
African Postcard collection, EEPA 1985-014, Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution.
National Museum of the American Indian. Exhibits Media Office Search this
23 cu. ft. (23 record storage boxes)
This accession consists of audiovisual recordings created by the Exhibits Media Office for the exhibition This Path We Travel: Celebrations of Contemporary Native
American Creativity. This inaugural exhibition was installed at the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI), George Gustav Heye Center (GGHC) in New York, New York
(NY) and was a collaboration of fifteen Native American painters, sculptors, writers, musicians, and dancers. The exhibition featured sculpture, performance, poetry, music,
and video. Materials include interviews with artists; site visit recordings; meeting, conference, presentation, and performance recordings; and exhibition installation recordings.
Recordings can be found on VHS, Betacam-SP, U-matic, D2, and Hi-8 videotapes as well as on DAT audiotapes.
Each entry includes NMAI Item Number, Description, Tape/Roll Numbers, Date and Location