"Having helped to found the American Indian Movement in 1968, Lakota tribesperson Russell Means became the most visible leader for Native American rights during the late 1960s and 1970s, a period of heightened activism among tribal communities. A charismatic and controversial figure, Means sought to make the plight of Native Americans known by staging highly publicized demonstrations at such symbolically laden sites as Plymouth Rock, Mount Rushmore, and Alcatraz Island. In 1972 he led a group that occupied the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Washington, D.C. The following year he was at the center of an armed standoff with government authorities in the reservation town of Wounded Knee, South Dakota, where in 1890 more than 350 Lakota men, women, and children had died during a conflict with the U.S. Army.
Working from his own Polaroid photograph of Means, Andy Warhol created this portrait as part of his American Indian series." -- National Portrait Gallery