Despite Oklahoma having the largest most diverse Native America population in the United States, many of those interested in becoming artists and who wish to study in a formal academic setting presently leave the state to pursue their aspirations elsewhere. There is a strong desire to stem this exodus by offering academic opportunities that will meet the needs of Native Americans at home. Because Native Americans arts are inseparably linked to community-based song and dance, oral traditions, literature, and language, and to the lively influences of traditional lifestyles, it is all the more imperative that they have the opportunity to celebrate and deliberate on the native arts within their own familiar social and cultural environs.
OSNAA's design also includes interdisciplinary forms of study involving the arts and other academic disciplines. Its curriculum and staff will provide students the opportunity:
To combine immersion in the arts with comparative study of Native American history and cultural traditions;
To integrate study of the arts with concurrent involvement in Native American language research and preservation;
To engage in the preservation and revitalization of traditional Native American art forms while exploring novel avenues for moving these traditional forms in experimental and innovative directions;
To develop the knowledge base and skills required to succeed in the business of art and artistic endeavor.
The University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma is actively seeking support for the Oklahoma School for Native American Art. Individuals and corporations wishing to help in this project are invited to contact Alan Proctor.