Cultural Demonstration Series

History Behind the Arts

A home is a special place to everyone. It is a place of comfort, it holds our history, and it is our sanctuary. Grand Canyon has been a quiet home and sacred space to 11 different tribes within the Southwest. Native peoples and their ancestors have been in this area for countless generations. Even though Grand Canyon has been a National Park for over a hundred years, it is not just a National Park, it is a sacred place and home to many.  

Through symbols, patterns, and designs, native art of the Southwest displays the everyday life, beliefs, dreams, visions, and long-lasting traditions of the tribes. Grand Canyon National Park established a Cultural Demonstration Series in 2015 at Desert View as a way to give members of the 11 traditionally associated tribes a first-person voice here at the canyon. This program encourages interactions with the public through demonstrations of traditional native crafts. We have suspended the program as a result of the pandemic and wish to carry on with the program to bring native culture, history, and arts to Grand Canyon visitors who cannot visit at this time.

Follow us on Facebook or subscribe to our YouTube channel to view the History Behind the Arts social media series that explores the rich history of these people, their traditional native crafts, how they have been influenced over time, and learn about the artists who carry on this heritage. 



About the Cultural Demonstration Series

The Cultural Demonstration Series provides visitors an opportunity to interact with tribal artisans from Grand Canyon's traditionally associated tribes and share their history and crafts with the public. Grand Canyon Conservancy is committed to preserving cultural heritage at Grand Canyon through this educational program as well as the transformation of the Desert View area to reflect the diverse history of the tribes who call Grand Canyon home.

Jointly hosted with Grand Canyon National Park, the Cultural Demonstration Series, was created so park visitors may learn about the long history and rich cultures of the canyon's traditionally associated tribes directly from the artisans and community members of those tribes. As such, the Park and the Conservancy comply with the Indian Arts and Craft Act of 1990, ensuring that every art and craft product is marketed truthfully to consumers regarding the Indian heritage and tribal affiliation of the producer. 

The program is made possible with support and grants from Grand Canyon Conservancy and ArtPlace America

Navajo male sits a table with googles on making jewelry
Hand reaches down to pick up a Zuni fetish carving.
Female holds the beginning of a woven basket.
A person decorates a pot.

Explore demonstrators by craft

Explore the online gallery by craft below to learn more about the inspiring artists that participate in the Cultural Demonstration Series and History Behind the Arts program.

Want to help transform Desert View?

Donate today to support this culturally significant project. 

Note: Cultural Demonstrators are independent participants in the program and are not employees of the National Park Service or Grand Canyon Conservancy. The Park and the Conservancy are not party to any purchase or agreement made between producers and consumers. The Park and the Conservancy disclaim all liability for loss, damage (whether direct, indirect, or consequential), personal injury or expense of any nature whatsoever, from any transaction or purchase from Cultural Demonstrators through this site. The Park and the Conservancy offer no warranty for sales, shipping, or other agreements.