Art by Wendy Red Star with pattern and vibrant color.
Here in a Homemade Forest:
Common Reading Connections
August 22, 2023 – March 9, 2024

“Here in a homemade forest, poets, writers, scientists, foresters, shovels, seeds, elk and alder join in the circle with Mother Cedar, dancing the old growth children into being. We’re all invited. Pick up a shovel and join the dance.”

—Robin Wall Kimmerer, Old Growth Children in Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants*


Inspired by Washington State University’s 2023-24 common reading book, this exhibition highlights crucial themes from Braiding Sweetgrass through the lens of art, inviting visitors to engage in ongoing conversation about prioritizing a reciprocal relationship with the land, with each other, and with other living beings. To respond effectively to the challenging and uplifting examples offered by Kimmerer, we encourage dialogue that includes our whole community, honoring each person’s perspectives on: Traditional wisdom, cultural practice, scientific knowledge, teaching and parenting, environmentalism, and the importance of art, beauty, and storytelling. Drawing on a diverse selection of artworks and cultural objects created by both Native and non-Native artists, Here in a Homemade Forest: Common Reading Connections offers opportunities to engage deeply with themes from Braiding Sweetgrass.

The exhibition presents prints from Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts, a fine art printmaking studio on the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation; artworks from the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU; and cultural materials from the Museum of Anthropology WSU. Additional objects are on loan from Washington’s State Art Collection and Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation. The exhibition is guest curated by Michael Holloman, Associate Professor with the Department of Art WSU and enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.

Organized by the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art. Funding for this exhibition is provided by the David G. Pollart Center for Arts and Humanities, Nancy Spitzer, Patrick and Elizabeth Siler, the Samuel H. and Patricia W. Smith Endowment, the Holland Orton Endowment, and friends of the museum.

About the Common Reading Program

Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants was selected as the Common Reading Book for the second year in a row after a successful 2022-23 academic season. including participation from Native American Programs, the Department of Art WSU, and the Honors College. Educational programming in collaboration with the Common Reading Program and other partners is a priority for this exhibition. Please email Curator of Education Kristin Becker if you want to explore a collaboration:

*Published 2013 by Milkweed Editions


The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU is located in the Crimson Cube (on Wilson Road across from Martin Stadium and the CUB) on the WSU Pullman campus.

Exhibition Artwork

To view selected artworks from the exhibition, click on the arrows after each image, or click the individual work to scroll through full size images of the works.