Cree artist Kent Monkman joins Hirshhorn chief curator Stéphane Aquin for a discussion on colonization, sexuality, warfare, and resilience, which are key themes throughout his art practice.

Monkman is widely known for his interventions into Western European and American art history. Through a variety of media, including painting, video, performance, and more, Monkman addresses the complexities of Indigenous experiences throughout history to today. Monkman’s gender-fluid alter ego Miss Chief Eagle Testickle often appears in his work as “a time-traveling, shape-shifting, supernatural being who reverses the colonial gaze to challenge received notions of history and indigenous peoples.”

Monkman’s painting Honour Dance has been on view in Manifesto: Art x Agency, an exhibition that explores how artists used manifestos to engage with the political and social issues of their time and how contemporary practices still employ art as a tool in the making of history.

Kent Monkman, Honour Dance

Kent Monkman, Honour Dance, 2020

Miss Chief stands as a celebrated figure of honor in Honour Dance, which re-envisions nineteenth-century painter George Catlin’s Dance to the Berdashe from a contemporary Indigenous two-spirit perspective. A version of Dance to the Berdashe is in the collection of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

“What I’m trying to do is to authorize Indigenous experience, both historic and contemporary, into this canon of art history. We’ve been erased from the art history of this continent. The settler artists that came here, they had their own vision of this continent, which was essentially an empty landscape.” – Kent Monkman, CBC, 2019


6:50 pm | Zoom broadcast opens

7–8 pm | Kent Monkman in conversation with Stéphane Aquin

CART (real-time captioning) will be provided for this program. If you have any questions about accessibility for this program, please email

This virtual event is part of #HirshhornInsideOut, the Museum’s initiative to bring art into your home.

This program is presented with generous support from the National Museum of American Indian.