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Native American artists Marie Watt and Cannupa Hanska Luger want people to think of art as a verb rather than a noun. They are challenging artistic and institutional norms by inspiring communal practices that value the creative experience and process over the final product, showing us how art is the act of creation itself. Their collaborative exhibition will show at the Denver Art Museum, spring 2021, where 24 mixed media sculptures and large-scale works will be on display.
Marie Watt is a member of the Seneca Nation and works in textiles at the intersection of community, history and storytelling. Luger grew up on the Standing Rock Reservation and works in a variety of mediums including fiber, ceramics and repurposed materials that narrate stories of Indigenous cultural practices.
You are invited to participate in their open call to design and embroider bandanas for this project, and can read more about this project, the artists and the exhibition here and here.
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Consider ART as a verb
What would the world look like if, as humans, we thought of ourselves as companion species? Can acts of creative collaboration help heal broken bonds with the environment and with each other?
Contribute to a community based sculpture by designing and embroidering your own bandana that reflects your personal experience and cultural background. The bandana was chosen by the artists to represent protection and resilience, referring to the ongoing social unrest in our communities. The artists hope to create a sculpture using your submissions that will bring together communities and lead to greater understanding between people.
Through national and international participation, the artwork will become a temporary monument to collective relationship and collaborative handwork, bringing audiences into a tactile encounter with critically relevant issues of protection, shelter, reciprocity, sustenance, exchange, power, action, stewardship, wildness, kinship, vulnerability, and ferocity.
The final piece will be a 16' by 9 1/2' tall wolf with the stitched bandanas as its hide, and will be designed to easily collapse and travel. This project is being created in partnership with the Portland Garment Factory, a woman-owned and environmentally conscious garment studio.
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Deadline October 31, 2020
1. Find a bandana (or repurposed piece of fabric roughly the size of a bandana)
2. Fold the bandana in half, corner to corner, to create a triangle
3. Embroider and stitch text imagery, or any other visual statement onto the corner portion of the fabric.
Watch this video for inspiration
See the She-Wolf being created!
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Denver Art Museum: final sculpture coming May - August 2021
Michael C. Carlos Museum at Emory University: September - December 2021
Peabody Essex Museum: January - May 2022