Artists of Indigenous heritage have, for many decades in New York City, developed their practices in self-initiated contexts while endeavoring to extend the reach and visibility of their work to broader publics. Even as progressive art discourse celebrated an emergent multicultural outlook in the late 1980s, narratives around Native American art, culture, and experience remained simplified. Inspired by curator and artist Lloyd Oxendine’s American Art Gallery, founded in SoHo in the early 1970s, institutions such as the American Indian Community House (AICH) and American Indian Artists Inc. (AMERINDA) opened urban spaces for Indigenous representation which thrived outside of conventional value systems.
Pena Bonita; Demian DinéYazhi’ with Natalie Diaz, Sonia Guiñansaca and Julian Talamantez Brolaski; G. Peter Jemison; Adam and Zack Khalil with Jackson Polys; Alan Michelson; Native Art Department International (Maria Hupfield, Jason Lujan) and Christopher Green; Laura Ortman; Jolene Rickard; Kay WalkingStick; Kathleen Ash-Milby; Diane Fraher, Athena LaTocha, David Martine and Jaune Quick–to–See Smith; Candice Hopkins; Shanna Ketchum-Heap of Birds and Zoya Kocur
November 19, 2017 – January 21, 2018
Opening Saturday, November 18, 6 – 8 p.m.
Wednesday – Sunday: noon – 6 p.m.
Monday and Tuesday closed
Artists Space acknowledges the rich tapestry of Indigenous activity occurring in New York City. Among concurrent events that involve participants in Unholding, on November 15, Adam and Zack Khalil and Jackson Polys present in Culture Capture: A Screening of The Violence of a Civilization Without Secrets at The James Gallery. On November 18, Alan Michelson and Jackson Polys host the third colloquium in the Vera List Center’s Indigenous New York program at the New School, where Maria Thereza Alves, Seeds of Change: New York–A Botany of Colonization is on view from November 3 – 27. Transformer: Native Art in Light and Sound, curated by Kathleen Ash-Milby and David Garneau, is on view at the National Museum of the American Indian from November 10, 2017 – January 6, 2019. Maria Hupfield’s work is included in the exhibitionStudio Views: Craft in the Expanded Field at Museum of Arts and Design from October 24 – December 17. This will be expanded into a public performance staged by Hupfield in DoublePlus, a shared program with Dr. Mique’l Dangle and Mike Dangeli curated by Emily Johnson at Gibney Dance from December 7 – 9.
For more information and a list of programs click here
Indigenous New York, Artist Perspectives
Friday, November 17, 2017
Westbeth / Ramscale Studio
Indigenous New York, Artist Perspectives kicks off its culminating public program of the series with an exciting event at Ramscale Studio in the historic Westbeth artists’ building, featuring performances by artist Nadia Myre (Algonquin member of the Kitigan Zibi Anishinaabeg First Nation), artist Suzanne Kite (Oglala Lakota), and musician and composer Laura Ortman (White Mountain Apache). Drinks and refreshments will be served.
Saturday, November 18, 2017
The New School, University Center
Starr Foundation Hall
Indigenous New York, Artist Perspectives presents key findings of a day-long colloquium that focuses on artistic practices. This is the third and final of three colloquia that ground the research initiative Indigenous New York
, which has been co-founded by the Vera List
Center in collaboration with artist Alan Michelson (Mohawk), and co-organized with advisor, artist Jackson Polys (Tlingit). The series facilitates collaborations and exchanges among contemporary curators, artists, critics, and scholars of Native American, First Nations, and Indigenous descent and their non-indigenous colleagues that focus on indigeneity and the legacy of colonialism, and position the local as evidence of concerns shared globally.Building on the success of the first and second colloquia, the third in this series, Indigenous New York, Artist Perspectives
, focuses on contemporary indigenous artist perspectives and practices, grounded in innovative projects. These provide the launch pads and models for important dialogue and exchange around the themes of: Identity; Self-Organized Visibility; Place & Memory; and Collaboration. In the afternoon’s public presentation the following artists discuss the intersection of these topics and their individual artistic projects:
Richard Bell, Tent Embassy
Maria Hupfield and Jason Lujan, Native Art Department International
Suzanne Kite, Everything I Say Is True, and Nadia Myre, A Casual Reconstruction
Cristóbal Martínez and Kade Twist, Postcommodity
The panel and discussions are followed by a reception.
Following the Vera List Center’s panel and reception, we encourage our audience to attend the opening of Unholding, an exhibition and series of public programs at Artists Space that feature multiple generations of Indigenous artists
Unholding at Artists Space
Saturday, November 18, 6-8pm
Unholding presents work by Pena Bonita; G. Peter Jemison; Alan Michelson; Jolene Rickard; and Kay WalkingStick, all of whom showed in We the People, curated by Jean Fisher and Jimmie Durham at Artists Space in 1987, as well as contributions from Demian DinéYazhi’ with Natalie Diaz, Sonia Guiñansaca and Julian Talamantez Brolaski; Adam and Zack Khalil with Jackson Polys; Layli Long Soldier with Candice Hopkins and Duane Linklater; Native Art Department International with Christopher Green; Laura Ortman; Kathleen Ash-Milby; Diane Fraher, Athena LaTocha, David Martine and Jaune Quick–to–See Smith; and Zoya Kocur. Unholding will be accompanied by a print publication that includes commissioned texts by Candice Hopkins and Christopher Green, alongside a reprint of an essay by Jean Fisher. Judith Barry and Ken Saylor will contribute a web-based project that revisits their design work for the exhibition We the People.
The first of this series in October 2016, Indigenous New York, Curatorially Speaking examined four key inquiries: Indigenous and Non-indigenous Epistemologies and Methodologies; the Non-colonial Museum; Challenges of Collaborative Curation; and the Growing Indigenization of International art. The second colloquium, Indigenous New York, Critically Speaking, will provided opportunities for meaningful exchange between indigenous and non-indigenous critics and the public and examine how a fuller consideration of indigenous creative production might reconfigure regimes of critical writing. To this end, the discussions considered the following topics: Land Writes; Unsettling Narratives; Seeing Red: Invisibility and Opacity; and Resistance, Resurgence, and Collective Practice.
Indigenous New York is supported, in part, by the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, members of the Vera List Center Advisory Committee, and is part of the Vera List Center’s 2015–17 curatorial programs on Post Democracy.