Following presentations of Johnson’s performance work Being Future Being: Land / Celestial and Gibson’s Don’t Make Me Over, featuring Arielle Twist (Nehiyaw (Cree)) on July 22, Johnson and Gibson will discuss their practice in relation to the exhibition Indian Theater: Native Performance, Art and Self-Determination since 1969. Both artists will engage with the exhibition’s unifying principles of resistance and self-determination in a conversation moderated by Indigenous cultural thought leader and exhibition curator, Candice Hopkins (Carcross/Tagish First Nation).
Emily Johnson (Yup'ik) is an artist who makes body-based work. She is a land and water protector and an organizer for justice, sovereignty and well-being. Emily is a Bessie Award-winning choreographer, Guggenheim, Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, and United States Artists Fellow, and recipient of the Doris Duke Artist Award. She is based in Lenapehoking/NYC and Haudenosaunee lands. Emily is of the Yup’ik Nation, and since 1998 has created work that considers the experience of sensing and seeing performance. Her dances function as portals and care processions, they engage audienceship within and through space, time, and environment — interacting with a place’s architecture, peoples, history and role in building futures. Emily is trying to make a world where performance is part of life; where performance is an integral part of our connection to each other, our environment, our stories, our past, present and future. For more information on Catalyst and its Branches, visit www.catalystdance.com
Jeffrey Gibson (Mississippi Band of Choctaw and Cherokee), based in Hudson, New York, draws influence from popular music, fashion, literature, cultural and critical theory, and his own individual heritage. He recontextualizes the familiar to offer a succinct commentary on cultural hybridity and the assimilation of modernist artistic strategies within contemporary art.
Presented by the Center for Indigenous Studies at Bard College.