News from MIAC/Lab

Museum of Indian Arts & Culture presents "Painted by Hand: The Textiles of Patricia Michaels"

APRIL 25, 2024

Santa Fe, NM –  The Museum of Indian Arts & Culture is proud to announce Painted by Hand: The Textiles of Patricia Michaels (Taos Pueblo) opening Sunday, May 5, 2024. This exhibition tells the story of Patricia’s journey to create the designs she uses in her garments. 

As a Taos Pueblo woman in the world of haute couture, Patricia sought textiles that reflected the landscapes, peoples, experiences, and textures of her home and community. Finding none, she dove into the process of hand-painting textiles that tell stories of snowy aspens, mountain walks, and raindrops, as well as relationships, birth, struggle, and triumph. In Painted by Hand, learn more about how Michaels makes her famed images, which integrate deep knowledge of the landscape and elaborate physical processing. See textiles, tools, and garments reflecting the intention that goes into each painted fabric. 

“Taw-aw/Thank you for the honor to be a recipient of this award! As I reflect thinking of the past four decades, I couldn’t be more thankful to have experienced all the ups and downs of fashion and textiles design,” said Patricia Michaels. “I have been in a surrounding of fine arts & culture my whole life. With this I create shapes, form, conversations, stories, colors, movements, textiles, garments, and techniques that evoke life’s journeys as a Native traditional woman living in a modern world.” 

  Patricia Michaels is known for her haute couture fashion designs. Growing up in New Mexico, she was surrounded by beauty in culture, landscape, and art, all of which influenced her aesthetic. Her Native American heritage is deeply rooted in New Mexico. As a child, she spent significant time at Taos Pueblo where many of her family members lived, including her grandparents. In this majestic terrain, Patricia received a unique education—the environment became her teacher, and with the help of her elders, she learned to respect and honor the process of working with her hands and heart. 

 Michaels has become widely known for her designs through participation in the 2012 Emmy Award-winning season 11 of “Project Runway.” In June 2023, she dressed actress Tantoo Cardinal for the premiere of “Killers of the Flower Moon” at the Cannes Film Festival in France.

"We are honored to feature the extraordinary work of Patricia Michaels, whose artistry and vision truly embody the essence of Native Treasures,” said Danyelle Means Interim Director at Museum of Indian Arts & Culture.