Survivance and Sovereignty on Turtle Island: Engaging with Contemporary Native American Art

Pictured: Prayers for the Land, 2015 Arches watercolor paper printed with archival inks and acrylic paint, 6” x 5.5” x 7.5” by Shan Goshorn, Eastern Band Cherokee.(Photo: Kupferberg Holocaust Center)

Exhibition addresses the histories and present-day realities of the first people of this continent through contemporary art

News Release

Kupferberg Holocaust Center

Survivance and Sovereignty on Turtle Island: Engaging with Contemporary Native American Art is on view at the Kupferberg Holocaust Center through May 21, 2020. The exhibit is curated by Danyelle Means (Oglala Lakota) and QCC Art & Design faculty member, Kat Griefen, in collaboration with students and alumni from the QCC Gallery and Museum Studies Program and the KHC Fellowship Program.

The exhibition addresses the histories and present-day realities of the first people of this continent through contemporary art. Turtle Island is the name given to North America by the Anishinabek, the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois), and the Lenape — some of the Indigenous people of this region. The sixteen works on display address survivance: a term that emphasizes both cultural survival and resistance in the face of hundreds of years of genocide and mass atrocities. Survivance and Sovereignty on Turtle Island has found its home at the KHC because it is only through studying the Holocaust that we develop the vocabulary to examine and acknowledge other genocides and the contemporary responses to them. By using art to communicate the impact that genocide has upon Indigenous people on Turtle Island, we can understand that these egregious crimes of attempted erasure are not outliers but part of a continuum.

To schedule a guided tour of the exhibit for your class or group, please contact khc@qcc.cuny.edu for more information.

Artists:

Gina Adams - Ojibwa Lakota descent

Nadema Agard - Cherokee/Lakota/Powhatan

Pena Bonita - Apache

Dennis RedMoon Darkeem - Wind Clan/Creek Seminole

Judy Dow - Abenaki

Ryan Elizabeth Feddersen - Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation {Okanagan/Arrow Lakes}

Nicholas Galanin - Tlingit/Aleut

Shan Goshorn - Eastern Band Cherokee

Merritt Johnson - Kanienkehaka {Mohawk}, Blackfoot, Irish and Swedish descent

Erica Lord - Athabascan, Iñupiaq, Finnish, Swedish, English, and Japanese

Jason Lujan

Cannupa Hanska Luger - Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, and Lakota

Mario Martinez - Pascua Yaqui Tribe of Arizona

Meryl McMaster - Plains Cree member of the Siksika Nation, British and Dutch

Kent Monkman - Cree

Renelle White Buffalo - Lakota Sioux

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