aNm Awarded Federal Contract: NMAI Native New York

New Federal Contract with Smithonian 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

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.

Jonathan Nelson was born and raised in the Four Corners area of New Mexico, Jonathan (Diné) began his art experience with coloring books like many children. His drawing has evolved into a career as a creative professional. When he’s not painting or drawing, he is designing print material and websites as a graphic artist. He is the illustrator for The Wool of Jonesy and Charlesbridge Press’ First Laugh. His work is inspired from identity and life on the Navajo reservation.

Kaylene Big Knife is a member of the Chippewa Cree Tribe of the Rocky Boy Indian Reservation, Montana. She is a graphic designer and an illustrator and has worked on the Indigenous Comic Con with Native Realities, including their 2018 poster and character designs. She works both in digital illustration and hand-drawn illustration to celebrate her heritage and all of Indian Country.

Kristina BadHand (Sicangu Lakota and Cherokee) is a freelance Illustrator, contracted art instructor, design and art/media consultant. Kristina is Indigenous comic book artist and received art instruction from the Art Institute of Colorado. Her company, Bad Hand Illustrations is a sole proprietor business owned and operated by Kristina, works alongside Indigenous Narrative Collective, and other organizations to bring the art and increase Native American cultural awareness.


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

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