aNm Awarded Federal Contract: NMAI Native New York

New Federal Contract with Smithsonian NMAI

aNm, in collaboration with Native Realities, has been awarded another US federal contract with National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI), Smithsonian Institution (SI) to provide comic book illustrations for the “Native New York” exhibition.

In 2020, the National Museum of the American Indian in New York City will open a vibrant new exhibition, Native New York, with a goal of changing how visitors see both New York State and Native people. Through stories of history and culture, and from the perspectives of contemporary Native people who call New York home, the show will expand popular notions of New York and answer the question: What makes New York a Native place?

About Native Realities

Native Realities is dedicated to producing and promoting high quality, authentic and dynamic Indigenous-centric comics, graphic novels, games and toys that inspire Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike to reimagine their perceptions of Native and Indigenous people in pop culture. Founded in 2015, Native Realities has published more than ten titles and is the hosts and founders of the Indigenous Comic Con.

Team Members – [updated]

Michael Sheyahshe is an enrolled member of the Caddo Nation and owner of aNm. Michael has extensive professional experience creating comics, graphic novels, animations, and various visual media as well as impressive academic credentials in Film (BA, cum laude), Native American Studies (BA, cum laude), and Fine Arts (MFA). Michael will be the main point-of-contact for the comic book illustration project.

Lee Francis IV

Dr. Lee Francis 4 (Pueblo of Laguna) is the Head Indigenerd and CEO of Native Realities, the only Native and Indigenous pop culture company in the United States with the hope to change the perceptions of Native and Indigenous people through dynamic and imaginative pop culture representations. He has been published in multiple publications ranging from poetry to short stories. His first comic book is Sixkiller which debuted June 2018. He is a strong advocate for Native youth, with a focus on community literacy and entrepreneurship.

Dale Deforest

Dale Deforest was born on the Navajo Reservation in Tuba City, Arizona, and grew up in the Farmington and Shiprock area of New Mexico. He is an award-winning illustrator and designer, earning First Place at the 2011 Inland Press Association Awards, and several First and Second place awards for design for the New Mexico Press Association (2000-2013). Titles include The Hero Twins, the children’s book series Powwow Mysteries and the children’s book Race to the Sun written by Indigenous author and Nebula Award Winner Rebecca Roanhorse.

Arigon Starr is an enrolled member of the Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma. She is an award-winning musician, songwriter, actor, playwright, and the creator of the Super Indian comic book. She has been awarded two First Americans in the Arts Awards, the Maverick Award from the Los Angeles Women’s Theater Project, and a Woodcraft Circle of Native Writers Award.

Maria Wolf Lopez is an Indigenous comic book creator, concept artist, video game designer and illustrator. She identifies with her tribe the Tarascan, purepecha of Michoacán Mexico and has created comic book illustrations for the Smithsonian Institute National Museum of the American Indian’s “Native Knowledge 360” (KN360) online exhibit. She studied at the International School of Comics in Chicago, Illinois and is also the artist on Deer Woman: An Anthology, featuring several MOONSHOT creators She is known for using intense detail and extraordinary textures in her work to depict wildness.


aNm and Native Realities also look to recruit two additional artists from the local nations in the New York area.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *