Buffalo Butte is a sacred American Indian site located in South Dakota. Various legends explain its significance to the Indigenous tribes. One legend recounts that each spring a sacred White Buffalo would emerge from the cave of the butte to lead the buffalo to the prairies to be hunted. As Burr’s image illustrates, the relationship between Indigenous people and the buffalo is one of reverence and spiritual significance. Survival was dependent on the animal, not only for food – its hide and bones were use for clothing, tools, and many aspects of living.
Ryan Burr is an artist from Mandaree, North Dakota, located on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation.
Included in Fables, Insults, and Reverence: The Animals of UND Art Collections Exhibition at the UND Art Collections Gallery in the Empire Arts Center