Shiprock Santa Fe art gallery is dedicated to showcasing Native American art of antiquity, as well as the present day. The collection was begun and has been maintained by Jed Foutz for over twenty years and includes textiles, jewelry, folk art, fine art, and more. Foutz comes from a historic family of Native American art traders and was raised on the Navajo Nation.
The gallery’s name is taken from the legend of Shiprock, a volcanic rock formation. This formation and the surrounding land are mentioned in many Navajo myths and legends. One such legend posits that bird monsters lived on the peak and fed on human flesh. The great warrior Monster Slayer is said to have killed two of these adult monsters and transformed two younger ones into an eagle and an owl.
One of the artists featured in the gallery is photographer Laura Gilpin. Gilpin is most famous for her photographs of Native American peoples, particularly the Navajo and the Pueblo. Gilpin received her first camera in 1903, on her twelfth birthday, and her passion for the medium escalated from there. She made her first autochrome (referring to Autochrome Lumière, an early color photography process) when she was only seventeen-years-old. This is especially impressive at such a young age because this process had only become popularized earlier that year. In 1918, she opened a studio in southern Colorado and another in New Mexico. By the mid-1930s, she began receiving critical acclaim for her work depicting the Navajo and Pueblo peoples. She was awarded one of the first Annual Awards for Excellence in the Arts by the governor of New Mexico in 1974 and was an active member of the Santa Fe arts scene until her death in 1979.
The gallery also hosts exhibitions. One such exhibition was a showcase of the use of Native American imagery in advertisement and signage. Shiprock also ensures that it remains an active part of the art community by engaging with present-day Native American artists. The gallery hosted an opening for Native American artists of the Kiowa tribe Keri Ataumbi and Teri Greeves. Ataumbi and Greeves are sisters who were jointly named the Living Treasures for the 2015 Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival. Ataumbi is known for her jewelry work and Greeves for her beadwork. Other artists featured in the gallery include jeweler and bead worker Victoria Adams, jeweler Cippy Crazy Horse, and potter Helen Cordero.