Carmelita Little Turtle

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Carmelita "Carm" Little Turtle was an Apache/Tarahumara photographer[1] born in Santa Maria, California, 4 June 1952. She is known for producing/photography with Shenandoah Films in Arcata, California from 1980 to 1983. Her work engages with gender relations and women's rights.[2] Little Turtle uses photography, often humorously, to explore personal relationships between women and men. Her photography is known for bringing impossible moments to life, which give reality to her imagination. She creates a multitude of worlds in a Southwestern landscape that acts as a backdrop to the dynamics of interpersonal relationships. Little Turtle has published both a book and several articles in her work.

Little Turtle attended the Navajo Community College, graduating in 1978. She also attended the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, where she studied photography. Additionally, she studied photography at the College of the Redwoods, Eureka, California. She first began schooling in order to become a nurse before deciding to become an artist.

Her first exhibition was in 1982 at the Hardwood Foundation in Taos, New Mexico. She has been a part of both individual and group exhibitions. Her first group exhibition was also in 1982. Titled Native Americans Now, it was located at the American Indian Museum in Santa Rosa, California. Many of the exhibitions she participated in were based around or about the Native American theme. Her exhibitions ran up to 1996.

Her work is seen in several collections. These include the Center for Creative Photography, Heard Museum, Southwest Museum, Southern Plains Indian Museum, and the Western Arts American Library. She was awarded the Western States Arts Federation Fellowship in 1993.

Lawrence Abbott interviewed her in his book, I Stand in the Center of the Good: Interviews with Contemporary Native American Artists (1994).[1] Jensen, Andrea Joan (1988). Women Artists of the American West. McFarland.}}


  1. ^ a b Abbot 137
  2. ^ Farris, Phoebe (2005). "Contemporary Native American Women Artists: Visual Expressions of Feminism, the Environment, and Identity". Feminist Studies. 31 (1): 95–109. doi:10.2307/20459008.