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Press Release: Painting Ourselves Visible – Aya Tarek 2019

Aya Postcard Front

Egyptian Muralist returns to Tampa

Art2Action and Gallery221@HCC will host Aya Tarek, and 3 days of free events to celebrate a new mural, with music, film screenings, and more!

Tampa, FL.  Art2Action, Inc. and Gallery221@HCC will host Egyptian graffiti artist, muralist and painter Aya Tarek at the Hillsborough Community College (HCC) Dale Mabry Campus this month, premiering a new mural with a three-day extravaganza of programming, November 21-23, 2019.

The project, titled “Painting Ourselves Visible,” seeks to celebrate and increase the visibility of Arab, Middle Eastern/North African (MENA), and Muslim communities in the Tampa area. Art2Action received the “Treasure Tampa” grant for this project, with a substantial $30,000 award, from the Gobioff Foundation—a Tampa Bay-based private family foundation that has made it their mission to support the arts community of Tampa, FL. Additional programming support comes from the Alternate ROOTS “Partners in Action” program and Learning Exchange.

Aya Tarek is a prolific young artist who creates large-scale murals all over the world, from Cairo to Berlin, Sao Paolo to Portland, OR. Tarek first came to Tampa in 2015-16, as a featured artist in Art2Action’s “THIS Bridge: Arab, Middle Eastern and Muslim Artists” series, in partnership with the USF Contemporary Art Museum and Graphicstudio. Tarek considers herself to be an experimental artist who practices vast creative freedom in her work.

Events include a “Block Party” featuring Arab and American Hip Hop; and an outdoor screening of an Egyptian film, titled Microphone (in Arabic, with English subtitles), which features Aya Tarek as herself—a graffiti artist in Alexandria in 2010. There will also be a panel discussion on “Creative Placemaking,” with a delicious Middle Eastern lunch; and free arts workshops for all, including visual arts with Ameena Khan, theatre with Andrea Assaf and Kholoud Sawaf, and more—all skills, levels and abilities welcome (no previous arts experience required)!

EVENT INFO:  All events are free and open to the public, and will take place on the HCC Dale Mabry Campus (4001 W Tampa Bay Blvd, Tampa, FL 33614).

Thursday, November 21 – Outdoor Events

  • 11am-2pm – “Block Party” Celebration with music and performances
  • 12-12:30pm – Official Ribbon-cutting to present the new Mural
  • 5-8pm – Evening celebration & film screening of Microphone (Arabic, English subtitles)

Friday, November 22 – Auditorium (DLRC 106); space is limited, please RSVP.

  • 11:30-12pm –Video Screening: “Creating Place: The Art of Equitable Community Building”
  • 12-1pm – Panel: “What is Creative Placemaking?”
  • 1-2pm – Lunch catered by Radiant Kitchens, with tours to the Mural

Saturday, November 23 – (DSTU classroom 108-112)

  • 10am-2pm – Arts Workshops open to all community members, all levels of experience! Visual Arts, Theatre and more! Including a light lunch by Radiant Kitchens. Please RSVP.

All Tampa Bay communities are invited to join the festivities and participate. All media are cordially invited to cover the events, to help generate awareness and increase understanding about Arab, MENA and Muslim cultures, and to build bridges across communities. We also invite all organizations to share this event on their community calendars.

For updates and details, please visit:  https://art2action.org/aya-tarek/

 

Mural Logos 2019

About our Partners & Sponsors:

Alternate ROOTS supports the creation and presentation of original art that is rooted in community, place, tradition or spirit. We are a group of artists and cultural organizers based in the South creating a better world together. As Alternate ROOTS, we call for social and economic justice and are working to dismantle all forms of oppression – everywhere. For information about the “Creating Place” compendium, visit: https://alternateroots.org/creating-place/

Art2Action, Inc. creates, develops, produces and presents original theatre, interdisciplinary performances, performative acts and progressive cultural organizing, dedicated to cultural equity and innovation, artistic quality and community value, performativity and impact.  https://art2action.org

Gallery221@HCC is a visual arts gallery dedicated to adding educational and cultural value to the community by exhibiting regional, national and international artists in all media. Gallery221@HCC and its auxiliary exhibition space, Gallery3@HCC, are located in Tampa, Florida on the Dale Mabry Campus of Hillsborough Community College.  https://www.hccfl.edu/campus-life/arts/galleries-hcc/gallery221

The Gobioff Foundation is a private family foundation which works to support human rights organizations and the Tampa, FL arts community. Our grants strengthen the ability of human rights and arts organizations to enrich the Tampa community and improve the state of human rights worldwide so that the world is a better place as intended by our founder.  Our mission is not static. It is constantly developing as we grow and our family grows. “Treasure Tampa” is a unique grant in that it awards grants to artists working with two groups: a non-profit, a for-profit private business or a local government run agency and it all must occur in the city of Tampa.  To read more, please visit:  www.treasuretampa.org and www.gobioff-foundation.org.

Radiant Hands is a nonprofit organization established in 2005 that empowers women and families in the North-Central Florida region by providing them with spiritual, emotional, educational, and financial support with the goal of helping them to achieve independence in mind. Since 2015, Radiant Hands Tampa has worked with the resettlement and integration into the community of refugees from Muslim and/or Arabic Speaking countries. Radiant Hands fills a niche in the community assisting those who normally would “fall through the cracks” of regular social service providers. Radiant Kitchens is one of our programs: https://www.radianthands.org/radiant-kitchens

 

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On the Urge to Perform – Andrea Assaf

Performative Visions

By Andrea Assaf

This article was first published by The Public Humanist (September 14, 2009).*

Perform: to give form to. To carry out, enact, or fulfill. To give a rendition of; to follow a pattern of behavior; to play. To do in a formal manner according to prescribed ritual; to be in a state of performing. To use language that actualizes what is spoken. To do thoroughly; to complete.

For me, personally, the urge to perform is multi-dimensional: it’s an urge to express; to live in a heightened state; and to enact something meaningful in public space, that shifts perception, has impact, or itself enacts change.

The imperative of the stage is to live fully and truthfully, moment by moment, in the presence of other people. It is to focus all of one’s being and energy on the realization and embodiment of the imagination. For some of us, performance is a spiritual practice as much as it is a creative or critical one. It is giving form to impulse. At its best, it is both being a vessel for pure energy, and carefully building a structure through which that energy can flow. The repetition and perfection of that structure, which we may call the craft of acting or performing, is (as Stravinsky said) the basis of the experience of artistic freedom.

A dear old friend of mine, Shantanand Saraswati, who is a spiritual teacher originally from India, once saw me perform Emily Dickinson in The Belle of Amherst at New York City’s Circle in the Square. I was not even twenty years old at the time. He came back stage to see me after the show, and I was anxious and curious to hear what his reaction might be. He squinted at me for a short while, and then said only, “You live better on stage than you do in your life.” Although I felt a bit devastated, I understood him immediately. He was referring exactly to what I had been training intensively to do as an actor – to be fully present, to express openly and without inhibition, to be keenly aware of and connected to my environment and all beings in the space, to follow impulse truthfully and without judgment – in other words, to surrender myself to what he would call the universal flow of the river of life, leading to the ocean of pure consciousness. Honestly, we always had a funny friendship, because I was a rather argumentative skeptic; but I respected his devotion to philosophical inquiry, and I think he was entertained by my tendency to challenge. I never forgot what he said. I knew that he had pinpointed exactly why I continually return to the stage.

The urge to perform, for me, is an urge to return to the place I feel most at home, and most alive. It’s extremely hard to get there. It’s ever-elusive and risky. The moment you take it for granted, it will disappear. If you lose focus, if you don’t commit yourself fully, if you haven’t trained, rehearsed or memorized enough, if you stop trusting yourself and those you share the stage with, if your ego overshadows the work of the art itself – any of these will take you quickly down a path of, at best mediocrity, or at worst, the emotional torture of knowing when you’re bombing on stage. But if you devote yourself unequivocally to the ritual of your craft, and remain absolutely present moment-by-moment; if you open the channels of your body, voice, and awareness; if you allow yourself to be inspired by the unexpected (because anything can happen on stage); if you stay acutely connected to all other performers; if you commit completely to the world of the imagination and live fully in what you have created – then, only then, might you reach a state of transcendence or euphoria, a rush of life-blood extending beyond the body, a state in which pain disappears, and everything outside the imaginary world temporarily dissolves. When you have lived like this on stage, you are usually both exhausted and exhilarated. Spent, but deeply satisfied. You may not always remember what you did or how it happened, but you know you went to places deep and high. You look forward to returning, and you’re curious about what you might discover, or perfect, the next time.

This is the unique pleasure of performance.

And on the other side, there is the emergency: the need to express. The deep wells of abuse or pain from which many of us draw our most urgent expressions. This is the catharsis of the performer, which may precede the ascendance. This is how we heal ourselves, or at least how we survive. It may be fulfilled, for some, by the process. For others, art requires an audience; the catharsis must be witnessed, heard, and shared by as many people as possible.

The need to express is probably something that all artists and writers share, although not all desire to perform. Some of us both write and perform. When the artist truly has something to say, the urge to say it, to express or make it visible in the public sphere, can drive us to great lengths. We can pursue that articulation, through words or through the body, for our entire lives. Because the urge to perform is also about impact – how what we create, express and embody as performers resonates in the community and the world(s) we inhabit. Performativity is about, not only what we enact, but what that act does in the world. What the art itself performs, what it brings into form or being.

For artists like me, who are inclined toward political analysis and obsessed with the notion of justice, having something to say is what drives the creative process to production. We are not only provoked by what disturbs us in the “real” world, but also by the concept of hope – by belief in possibility, in creating alternative realities, and by our visions of what the world could be. We desire to open spaces of imagination and belief in the public consciousness, so that more and more of society might see, not only the reflection of our ills and injustices, but also these visions of the possible … so that we might envision together, you could say, a new world …

There is an urge that drives me on. Even in the face of what some may say is impossible. It’s the urge to give form to vision. The urge to carry out, to enact, to fulfill. The urge to actualize what has been spoken. And to do so, thoroughly and completely.

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*Many thanks to Mass Humanities for publishing this and other blog articles by our Artistic Director!  For more, visit The Public Humanist and search for Andrea Assaf.

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Press Release: Kaleidoscope 2018

FINAL Kaleidoscope Design (crop)

Kaleidoscope

May 1, 2018

Contact: Eric Cárdenas, Director, Public Information

(813) 253-6232, publicinfo@ut.edu

For Immediate Release

Kaleidoscope:  A Multidisciplinary Exhibit by Military Community Artists at UT Scarfone/Hartley Gallery

May 18 – June 2, 2018

TAMPA — The University of Tampa`s College of Arts and Letters, Scarfone/Hartley Gallery and Department of Art and Design will be presenting Kaleidoscope:  A Multidisciplinary Exhibition by Military Community Artists.  Kaleidoscope is an exhibit featuring the artwork of active military and veterans from all branches of service.  This beautifully broad exhibit embraces art in all forms, including painting, ceramics, blown glass, photography, digital storytelling, and a live performance opening night.

Co-presented and sponsored by the University of Tampa`s Scarfone/Hartley Gallery, the Florida Art Therapy Association (FATA), and Art2Action, Inc., this exhibit aims to bring service members, their families, art, creative therapies, and the local community together to honor, witness, and experience the power of art, its healing capabilities, and the resiliency of the human spirit.  Curated by Saori Murphy, a visual artist and military veteran, the exhibition includes a variety of artists, including work by current UT student veterans.  The exhibition runs from May 18 – June 2, 2018.

On May 18th, the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery, Art2Action and the concurrent FATA Symposium will host a series of opening events.  Starting at 4 p.m., there will be an Artists’ Talk featuring five of the Kaleidoscope visual artists, including the curator, moderated by Art2Action Artistic Director, Andrea Assaf; followed by an Opening Reception at 5:30 p.m. in the lobby.  At 7 p.m., a special performance of CHRYSALIS: A new Play about Veterans, Breaking Through, and the process of Becoming more Human, (an Art2Action production) will be presented in the Gallery, followed by a post-show dialogue with the performers—including professional artists and veteran community participants.  Tickets for the performance will be $10 general admission / $5 for students and veterans/active military, and can be purchased at the gallery the day of the event (starting at 3 p.m.).

Chrysalis FB header

The Scarfone/Hartley gallery is located on campus at the R.K. Bailey Art Studios at 310 N. Blvd. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday. There is no charge for admission. For more information about these events, contact Jocelyn Boigenzahn, gallery director, at jboigenzahn@ut.edu or (813) 253-6217.

Art2Action’s Veteran Arts Program has been generously supported, in part, by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Council of Arts and Culture and the State of Florida, and the National Endowment for the Arts (Section 286.25, Florida Statutes).  For more information about Art2Action’s work with the military community, please visit:  https://art2action.org/veterans-in-tampa

Florida Art Therapy Association`s mission is to advocate for expansion of access to professional art therapists and lead the state in the advancement of art therapy as a regulated mental health and human services profession.  FATA provides information, resources, and meaningful networking opportunities to its members and the public.

The University of Tampa is a private, residential university located on 110 acres on the riverfront in downtown Tampa. Known for academic excellence, personal attention and real-world experience in its undergraduate and graduate programs, the University serves approximately 9,000 students from 50 states and 140 countries. Approximately 62 percent of full-time students live on campus, and more than half of UT students are from Florida.

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The original creators of CHRYSALIS (Photo by James Geiger, December 2017)

 

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Press Release: R&R Arts Festival 2017

For Immediate Release:  January 17, 2017

Tampa to Host National Summit & Festival

on Arts & Health in the Military

Art2Action Inc., in partnership with the University of South Florida (USF) and Americans for the Arts, presents the R&R Arts Festival: Performances by, for, about and with Veterans

Tampa, FL – In early February 2017, Art2Action, Americans for the Arts, and the University of South Florida (USF) will co-host the National Initiative for Arts & Health in the Military (NIAHM), 4th National Summit, focusing on the Role of the Arts in Recovery, Transition & Transformation. For the first time in the history of NIAHM’s National Summit convenings, the 2017 gathering will be held outside of Washington DC, and will include a festival of original performance works by, for, about and with Veterans, organized and curated by Art2Action. The ground-breaking R&R Arts Festival: From Recovery to Regeneration will place veterans’ stories—and the work of nationally acclaimed artists who create with them—at the center of an extraordinary cross-sector convening, bringing more than 200 military, veteran, and civilian practitioners, researchers, and policy makers together to share best practices, and help inform a nationwide vision for increasing access to the arts and creative arts therapies for all Veterans, as well as families and caregivers. The R&R Arts Festival is made possible by the generous support of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation’s Fund for National Projects grant program. Art2Action received $95,625 from DDCF to support this unique national event.  Additional partners include The Carpetbag Theatre, and New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) “Art in the Service of Understanding: New Perspectives from Artists and the Military Community” program.

EVENT INFO:  FEBRUARY 2-5, 2017

R&R Festival Series Package (discount for all 3 shows) – $39 general, $24 students/seniors, and $12 active military/veterans:  http://www.ticketmaster.com/Art2Action-RR-Festival-Series-Package-tickets/artist/2325451

  • Thursday, February 2Speed Killed My Cousin, an original play by Linda Parris-Bailey, about an African American woman soldier who returns from Iraq and struggles to understand her Post-traumatic stress, and her family’s history with vehicular suicide. Performed by The Carpetbag Theatre Inc., featuring Tampa’s own Andresia “Real” Moseley. 7:30 PM @ USF Theatre 1 (TAT), 3839 USF Holly Drive, Tampa, FL.
  • Friday, February 3Touch: The Love Concert, featuring special guests “The War & Treaty” led by Iraq war veteran turned singer-songwriter Michael Trotter, Jr., and the Touch iPad Band performing a new music composition based on stories of veterans in the Tampa Bay area, with local professional actors and USF students (directed by Dora Arreola, choreographed by Merry Lynn Morris). Proceeds benefit Military Service Outreach (MSO), helping veterans transition out of homelessness. 7:30 PM @ the USF School of Music Concert Hall (MUS), 3755 USF Holly Drive, Tampa, FL.
  • Saturday, February 4 Re/Generate: Dance! A mixed-ability dance concert featuring excerpts of Healing Wars by MacArthur “genius” Award winner Liz Lerman; Exit 12 Dance, choreographed by veteran Roman Baca; Marine-turned-performance artist Makoto Hirano; wheelchair dancer Dwayne Scheuneman and more!  7:30 PM @ USF Theatre 1 (TAT), 3839 USF Holly Drive.
  • Sunday, February 5Veterans Community Open Mic, featuring special guests, the Miami-based Combat Hippies directed by Teo Castellanos, poet and playwright Maurice Decaul, Veteran Stand-up Comedians, local DJ Cotton, and more! FREE & open to the public. Free coffee/tea for Veterans! 5-8 PM at Tre Amici @ The Bunker, 1907 N 19th St (Ybor City), Tampa, FL.

For more information about individual performances (single tickets $15 general, $10 students/seniors, and $5 military/veterans), and Free events, please visit:  www.art2action.org/RR-Festival

About Art2Action, Inc.

Art2Action Inc. creates, develops, produces and presents original theatre, interdisciplinary performances, performative acts and progressive cultural organizing. We support women artists, artists of color, queer or trans-identified artists, and creative allies. We are dedicated to cultural equity and innovation, artistic quality and community value, performativity and impact. Whether developing new work, collaborating with community partners, touring or presenting, community-based process and meaningful engagement with diverse constituencies is central to all of our work. As a mission-driven, artist-led organization, we increase our capacity, reach and impact through multi-year partnerships with local partners, national networks, institutions of service and higher learning, organizations and activists. Since 2013, Art2Action has been a designated campus presenter at the University of South Florida, housed in the School of Theatre and Dance. As part of our on-going partnership with The Carpetbag Theatre, supporting veteran recovery and reintegration through the arts, Art2Action offers performing arts workshops for veterans at the Veterans Recovery Center (PRRC) of the James A. Haley Veterans Hospital in Tampa, and across the country. For more information, please visit:  https://art2action.org/veterans-in-tampa

About Americans for the Arts

Americans for the Arts is the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education, dedicated to representing and serving local communities and to creating opportunities for every American to participate in and appreciate all forms of the arts. With offices in Washington, DC, and New York City, it has a record of more than 55 years of service. Since 2011, Americans for the Arts has led the National Initiative for Arts & Health in the Military (NIAHM), a collaborative effort that seeks to advance the policy, practice, and quality use of the arts and creativity as tools for health in the military; raise visibility, understanding, and support of arts and health in the military; and make the arts as tools for health available to active duty military, military families, and veterans. Among NIAHM’s advisors, partners and collaborators include the American Legion Auxiliary, Department of Defense Office of Warrior Care Policy, the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs, U.S. Veterans Health Administration, and NIH’s National Center of Complementary & Integrative Health, in addition to national, state and local arts, humanities, and veterans service nonprofits; state and local cultural agencies; and universities around the country.

About the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

The mission of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation is to improve the quality of people’s lives through grants supporting the performing arts, environmental conservation, medical research and child well-being, and through preservation of the cultural and environmental legacy of Doris Duke’s properties. The Arts Program of DDCF focuses its support on contemporary dance, jazz and theater artists, and the organizations that nurture, present and produce them. For more information, visit:  http://www.ddcf.org

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CAATA Reflections: Pre-conference of West & Central Asian American Artists 2016

By Shruti Purkayastha

Re-posted with permission from the TeAda Productions newsletter, November 2016

Editor’s Note:  In October 2016, Art2Action co-organized the pre-conference to the National Asian American Theatre Festival, produced by the Consortium of Asian American Theaters & Artists (CAATA), hosted for the first time by Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF).  The pre-conference convened Middle Eastern, West & Central Asian American artists and allies for long weekend of dialogue and creative exchange, including a reading at the Portland Library, a panel at the University of Oregon organized by Dr. Michael Malek Najjar, a keynote address by Zeyba Rahman (archived on HowlRound), an OSF Green Show concert by Art2Action artists, an Open Mic at Hearsay Bar & Lounge, and a community workshop with Iraqi refugees beautifully faciliated by TeAda Productions.  The pre-conference was made possible by the generous support of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.  We are grateful for this wonderful reflection by TeAda’s Shruti Purkayastha, below.

TeAda Productions has become such a home space for me.  This was my first time entering the CAATA CONFEST space this year hosted by Oregon Shakespeare Festival.  This was also my first time North of San Francisco, first time “touring” with Leilani and Ova, first time truly engaging with a national Asian-American Theater landscape, first time seeing performances on the famous OSF stages.

My first weekend, I supported the West Asian pre-conference, sharing with artists who identify with the working identities of “Middle Eastern/West & Central Asian American.” I met Andrea Assaf, of Art2Action and pre-conference coordinator briefly Friday night, and geared up to be open to whatever might come up for our weekend’s work with artists and community.  In an effort to support vital conversations, I was honored to witness stories and visioning. What a gift to support a space for this group of people that is not centering a white European lens.  Questions that struck me: What does it mean to approach our work around intersecting stories and issues? When is identity a tool for this, for raising our voices prouder and stronger, building the resilience of ourselves and our communities? How do we support each other cross-culturally, holding the broad national, gender, religious, artistic experiences and backgrounds.
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Pre-conference participants experiencing TeAda’s Refugee Nation workshop

I learned how many people do not always immediately identify as Middle Eastern– a term assigned to the region by the British Empire in the 1850s. To this day, the information we receive from news and media outlets in the US are terribly skewed, often depending on centuries old racism as shorthand in stories. Through the day-long sessions, and the evening open mic I had the honor of hosting, I learned about the amazingly diverse religions and spiritualities of the region.  I learned about the risks Palestinian artists take to perform their truths, to the silencing sound of death threats at times. I heard stories of highly militarized regions, where it was normal to learn how to shoot a gun in elementary school, where resilience and art is grown in the midst of hearing about loved ones lost in bombings. I heard love stories and lullabies from grandmothers that reminded me of my own Bengali musical heritage.  I witnessed the magic of bringing people with common experience together, some of whom had never had a space centering this identity. So much was shared, and when you are gifted stories, you offer something in return. I offered a Bengali folk song, honoring the Ganges river, a reminder of how water and land connect all of us.
shruti-open-micShruti Purkayastha hosting open mic and performing a Bengali folk song

On Sunday, we had the opportunity to connect with community members, recent Iraqi refugee-status immigrant families, bringing together people ages 10 months to senior with the magic of theater games and storytelling. We played together, celebrated over 12 languages in the room, shared in embodied images, and witnessed stories. A huge thanks to the several artists that stepped up to offer Arabic translation in solidarity, a first for a couple folks. The families left appreciating the sense of play, openness and new friendship. Mahalo and gratitude for the healing and rich storytelling work possible, and the listening deeper solidarity requires.
caata-pre-conf-workshop-groupTheatre artists and recent refugee participants of the TeAda Refugee Nation workshop

The rest of the trip is a blur– performing a song in another open mic, seeing 5 different shows of all Asian casts, attending breakout sessions, an action taking over a street to say no to White Supremacy, leading our own TeAda workshop sharing Masters of the Current and CreAtive Self-Care, supporting a post-show discussion for Eleven Reflections on September (remembering the high stakes and profound loss for refugee artists in the process), making new and deepening older ones.  My last night was witnessing all generations of CAATA get down on the dance floor.  Trust, nothing like this has ever happened in Ashland, Oregon before.

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Indigenous Artists Gathering 2015

“Indigenous Artists Gathering 2015 — Minneapolis, Minnesota”

By Ashley Minner, Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina

First Published by Alternate ROOTS

Way back in deepest, darkest winter – on February 24th, to be exact – a message from ROOTS member Andrea Assaf appeared in my inbox and brightened my day. It was a special invitation to attend an Indigenous Artists Gathering in Minneapolis, MN as a representative of ROOTS. The invitation, from Pangea World Theater and Art2Action Inc., in partnership with the First Peoples Fund and New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) read: “During the pilot phase of developing the National Institute for Directing and Ensemble Creation … it was glaringly obvious that many of the existing theater networks did not include any Native-identified, First Peoples or Indigenous artists …”

Present at this historic, unprecedented convening were representatives of Native communities from Alaska all the way to Panama. This is not to say that all Native communities were represented, nor that everyone who should have been there was there. But it was a good start, with space and time to discuss who was absent from the conversation and how to get us all together in the future.

[Quoting Mr. William S. Yellow Robe Jr.:] “…Part of this reconciliation is that we have to identify our pasts. Everyone in the theater wants to move forward and I agree that has to happen, but let’s not forget our past. Let’s not forget those that broke ground that made it possible for all of these other groups to exist.”

…In the legacy of settler colonialism — which, by definition, never really ends — Native people have to disappear. They are a “‘present absence’ in the U.S. colonial imagination, an ‘absence’ that reinforces, at every turn, the conviction that Native peoples are indeed vanishing and the conquest of Native land is justified.”[ii] Being that blood was shed on the land upon which we stand…We should acknowledge Native communities wherever we live and work on this land.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE!

Follow on Social Media: #IAG2015 #insteadofredface #idlenomore

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FEN Magazine on “Eleven Reflections”