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The New Mexican's Weekly Magazine of Arts, Entertainment & Culture Tuesday, July 22, 2014

By Natives, for Natives

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Posted: Friday, September 20, 2013 5:00 am | Updated: 10:50 pm, Thu Oct 3, 2013.

The range of traditional American Indian housing types includes multistory adobe dwellings, hogans, tepees, wickiups, the residential earthworks of the mound builders, the enormous wood houses of the Wakeshan people of Vancouver Island, and the cedar-planked, shed-roof houses of the Makah people in Neah Bay, Washington. Those Makah structures no longer exist. The people were forced by missionaries and government agents to pull most of them down a century ago, and the obliteration was completed by the U.S. military during World War I. However, some of the tribe’s new buildings honor what was lost.

One that is highlighted in New Architecture on Indigenous Lands (University of Minnesota Press) is the Makah Cultural and Research Center designed by Fred Bassetti and Company Architects, Seattle, and Canadian designer Jean Jacques André. It houses many of the 55,000 artifacts that were buried in a mudslide more than 500 years ago and then uncovered by tidal erosion in 1970. The building is of traditional red cedar, including in the horizontal planks that recall a Makah meetinghouse of old.

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