CMA Stories

6 Fun Facts About Edgar Heap of Birds

On Sunday, November 3, join us in celebrating Indigenous culture in partnership with Redhawk Native American Arts Council. Participate in workshops, performances, and Story Time and learn about the practices of contemporary Indigenous artists Margaret Jacobs, Frank Big Bear, Edgar Heap of Birds, and more. Read on for six fun facts about Hock E Aye VI, also known as Edgar Heap of Birds!

1. Edgar Heap of Birds’ Cheyenne name is Hock E Aye VI. He is a member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes and currently lives and works on tribal land in Oklahoma.

2. Edgar Heap of Birds has been making art since the 1970s. He is best known for his text-based artworks that highlight the Native American experience.

3. Early on, Heap of Birds was inspired by Wichita artist Blackbear Bosin, a Kiowa-Comanche artist who made sculpture and painting.

4. Nowadays, Heap of Birds takes inspiration from movies, song lyrics, and conversations that he overhears — he used to jot down bits of conversation in a notebook, but now he uses his cell phone!

5. In 2005, Edgar Heap of Birds created a fifty-foot outdoor sculpture entitled Wheel at the Denver Art Museum. This monumental sculpture was inspired by the traditional Medicine Wheel of the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming.

6. You may have seen his work on view at MoMA PS1 earlier this year. Surviving Active Shooter Custer addressed the link between historical violence and today’s ongoing injustices.

Learn more about CMA’s Indigenous Peoples Cultural Festival and purchase tickets here.

This program is supported, in part, by the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts with support of Governor Andrew Cuomo, and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. This event is made possible thanks to the generous support of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the Redhawk Native American Arts Council. The Redhawk Native American Arts Council is a non-profit organization founded in 1994 and maintained by Native American artists and educators who reside in and around the New York City area. Each year they provide venues for over 200 different First Nations’ artists and educators to present and share their art forms with audiences around the world. They are dedicated to breaking stereotypes by presenting the traditions and societal contributions of Native Americans through song, dance, art, film, crafts, foods, and other forms of expression. Learn more at

More in Fun Facts

Sign up to get updates and special invitations