Artist Birdie Real Bird
Nation Apsáalooke (Crow)

Artist Biography

Birdie Real Bird is a beadwork artist and member of the Apsáalooke tribe. Raised on the Crow Reservation, Real Bird is descended from beaders and warriors. Her father, Jim Real Bird, was the grandson of Annie Medicine Crow-Real Bird and Frank Bethune. Annie, known as a skilled beadworker, was the only daughter of Chief Medicine Crow.

After years of beading with her grandmother, where they created their own designs, Real Bird became interested in replicating traditional designs. She began to visit museums to study the Apsáalooke artifacts in collections. As well as beading, Real Bird makes traditional Crow Indian dolls. Her dolls are collected by museums and patrons in the US, Japan and England and have been on display in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C. She teaches many workshops for adults and children on doll making, beading and traditional Crow Indian life. Real Bird beads every day, in the style of the historical pieces she’s been researching over the years.