Henry Payer

Henry Payer, Northern Plains Indian Artist in Residence at USD.


Henry Payer is the 2019 Northern Plains Indian Artist Residency Recipient. His work will be on display in the John A. Day Gallery at USD this fall.

VERMILLION, S.D. – The University Art Galleries and the University of South Dakota are pleased to announce this year's Northern Plains Indian Artist in Residence (NPIAR), Henry Payer. The NPIAR is funded by a generous grant from the Cargill Foundation Contemporary Native Arts Program (CNAP) at the University of South Dakota.

Payer’s work produced during his residency will be on exhibit in the John A. Day Gallery located in the Warren M. Lee Center for Fine Arts Oct. 16 through Nov. 17, 2019. There will be an opening reception Oct. 18 from 6–8 p.m.

Payer, Ho-Chunk, from Winnebago, Nebraska, is a multidisciplinary artist living and working in Sioux City, Iowa. He was an artist-in-residence at the Great Plains Art Museum in Lincoln, Nebraska, in 2018, he has been recognized in the “Ten ‘Must See Paintings’ in South Dakota” in the South Dakota Magazine and he was a featured artist in the "Air, Land, Seed" Exhibition of Contemporary Indigenous Arts at the University of Venice Ca’Foscari, Palazzo Cosulich in 2013.

Payer’s residency project will focus on the removal and relocation route of the Ho Chunk people from Wisconsin during the Dakota Uprising of 1862. Payer will travel to significant locations and collect materials from the Crow Creek area, down the Missouri River and end at Winnebago, Nebraska.

“The land inspires and provides ideas, stories and experiences,” Payer said. “Using the collected site-specific materials and found objects from the landscape, I will create a body of mixed media paintings that explore an active way to map the landscape combining both perspective and place as a conceptual idea of our connection to the land, residence and experience.”


USD's College of Fine Arts encourages students to pursue their chosen professional field in art, music or theater through their study with nationally recognized faculty who are working professionals. Students learn and grow to be professional fine artists with great job potential anywhere in the country. The college offers opportunities for additional real-world experiences through work with guest artists, study tours abroad and opportunities at the National Music Museum and the University Art Galleries on the Vermillion campus and the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park. The college brings more than 80 guests artists to campus annually to work with students.


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