Photo by Marylene May
LAURA ORTMAN (White Mountain Apache) is a Brooklyn composer, musician, visual artist, and hairstylist. Currently, she is recording her third solo album with Gowanus engineer Martin Bisi, playing violin, Apache violin, electric guitar, amplified piano, Casio, pedal steel guitar, vocals, samples and field recordings. She has collaborated with great artists, filmmakers, dancers and musicians from New York, New Mexico, Italy and Canada, including Jock Soto, Nanobah Becker, Raven Chacon, Martha Colburn, Tony Conrad, Pauline Oliveros, Okkyung Lee, Alan Michelson, Lorenzo Clayton, and Pegi Vail. She has toured, performed and recorded with New York bands Stars Like Fleas, The Dust Dive, Raft’s Assemble, and White Hills. In the fall of 2014 she was awarded a five week Rauschenberg Residency for music in Captiva, Florida. In 2008, she founded the Coast Orchestra, an all-Native American orchestral ensemble performing and improvising to the 1914 original score to photographer Edward Curtis’s only film “In the Land of the Head Hunters” to sold-out audiences at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and the American Museum of Natural History in New York.