Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Thieves Stole, Hacked Up and Sold Sculpture That Honored Famed Native American Ballerina

The culprits sawed the life-sized bronze tribute to Marjorie Tallchief into pieces


Osage ballerina Marjorie Tallchief dazzled audiences in Paris, Monaco and New York City throughout the mid-20th century with what one critic described as “quasi-acrobatic virtuosity.” For the last 15 years, a bronze statue commemorating the late Native American dancer stood in front of an Oklahoma museum about an hour from where she grew up.

But late last week, police say, a thief cut down the statue, hacked it into pieces and sold the parts for scrap metal.

The pilfered artwork was one of the “Five Moons” statues in front of the Tulsa Historical Society & Museum (THSM). Designed by two Tulsa-area artists, the statues commemorate the Sooner State’s gifted Native American ballerinas: Tallchief; her sister, Maria Tallchief; Yvonne Chouteau; Rosella Hightower; and Moscelyne Larkin.


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