„Chokma, Chinchoma?“– about the exhibition:
„Hello, how are you?“ – in context of mean is an introduction; first to greet you and then to engage you in a culture of vast diversity that once made up the continents of the Americas. In the US currently, there are around 562 Federally Recognized tribes of Native People. A culture that has over 300 spoken languages – not counting those tribes of people that are not federally recognized by the government.
A reduced number of these cultures exist today, but they are alive and well with traditions passed down the way they have been for thousands of years. The wisdom of elders to the next generation. All with a rich cultural, historical, & vibrate heritage. What we generally know about Native American Culture and History gets briefed over in classrooms, portrayed as savages in movies and TV, or romanticized in holidays when suited for the desire of compassion. The generalization of the betterment of a half a dozen stereotypes gets applied to all Native People. The Tipi, Wolf, Eagle, Dreamcatcher, Feathers, Medicine Man. It’s been a repetition in our recounted understanding of how to see and identify. Frank Lloyd Wright was influenced and used elements in his architecture projects, his method was to take from many tribes of native people and create a generalization of elements.
When you boil rich culture of any group of people in the past or current down to a few bullet points that can easily identify – you rob them of their humanity. They become a marginalized people – and the ability to full compassionately identify with them is removed from the equation.
„Chokma, Chinchoma?“ is to show through drawings, paintings, and sculptures the diversity, details, richness of a very small portion of Native Peoples collected from my personal travels throughout 2017. Within the tiny details to illustrate how much care goes into every facet of life. Through Contemporary Art as a medium of communication, storytelling and the long-standing tradition of Native People as creative architects. To tell the story, the narrative becoming more specific with each artwork. Making Heritage Preservation of Humanity and Art one in the same. Creating artwork with a comparable integrity of specifics to the rich cultures of Native People expelling the former of stereotypes.