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This weekend and next week,  there are plenty of things to do in Indian Country — from film festivals dedicated to Indigenous storytelling to art fairs, powwows, engaging panel discussions with renowned contemporary Native artists and more.

Here is Native News Online’s weekly round-up of arts, culture and entertainment offerings around Indian Country.

ImagineNATIVE Film and Media Arts Festival 
Sunday, Oct. 24- Sunday, Oct.30 

The 23rd annual ImagineNATIVE Film and Media Festival celebrates Indigenous storytelling in film, video and audio, and digital art through screenings, exhibitions, special events and more. The festival takes place in Toronto from Oct. 18-23, and then gets released for online streaming Oct. 24-30. This year’s programming features films and digital media that explore the Indigenous experience in various genres, including family-friendly, drama and documentary.

The festival brings works by lauded Indigenous directors such as Toby Mills (Ngāti Hinerangi), Marie Clements (Métis) and Rhiana Yazzie (Navajo).

Tickets for the online streaming of the festival are $50 and can be purchased here.

IAIA Sponsors SFiFF’s Indigenous Film Program at the Sante Fe International Film Festival
Thursday, Oct. 20, 6:20 p.m. MDT
The Center for Contemporary Arts, Sante Fe, NM

Seven short films by Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) students will be screened at the Center for Contemporary Arts Studio as part of the Sante Fe International Film Festival’s Indigenous Film Program. The program includes four features, eight shorts (in addition to the IAIA student shorts), and 10 films from both the NM Film Program and the NM Shorts Program. 

Among the films is the short documentary Cara Romero: Following the Light, directed by Emmy Award-winning videographer Kaela Waldstein and executive produced by IAIA Assistant Professor of Art History Amber-Dawn Bear Robe (Siksika Nation) and IAIA Research Center for Contemporary Native Arts Director Dr. Lara Evans (Cherokee Nation).  Following the Light explores Cara Romero’s (Chemehuevi Indian Tribe) ’05 contemporary photography practice. 

Another IAIA-related film, New: ART is Culture, CULTURE is Art, directed by IAIA alum Nathaniel Fuentes (Santa Clara Pueblo) ’20, focuses its lens on IAIA co-founder and first president Lloyd Kiva New’s (Cherokee Nation) enduring influence on Indigenous fashion and entrepreneurship. Tickets are free but must be reserved here. 

Drum Circle with Djuro and Mr. Charging Crow
Saturday, Oct. 22, 3 p.m. — 4:30 p.m. CDT
Angelic Roots, Oak Creek, WI

Join Djuro & special guest Lakota elder Mr. Charging Crow for an afternoon of camaraderie, sound percussion, and singing as they lead participants in a drumming circle. Expand your mind and share your spirit while tapping into the universal heartbeat of rhythmic drumming. Mr. Charging Crow will teach you about the ceremony of Native American drumming and singing practices. The gathering is limited to 18 participants. Tickets cost $15 and are available for purchase here

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Dialogue: Wendy Red Star with Katerina Stathopoulou and Gaylord Torrence
Tuesday, Oct. 25 at 1:00 p.m. CDT
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago Zoom

Join the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago for a virtual conversation with Apsáalooke (Crow) artist Wendy Red Star on the occasion of the Public Art Fund’s exhibition Travels Pretty. The exhibition debuts new works by Red Star presented on 300 JCDecaux bus shelters in New York City, Chicago, and Boston. Raised on the Apsáalooke (Crow) reservation in Montana, Red Star reshapes dominant narratives by casting light on the complex histories of Native Americans through a feminist Indigenous lens. 

For Red Star’s first public art exhibition, she explores parfleches, vibrantly painted rawhide bags made by certain nomadic tribes of the North American Great Plains. Painted with intricate geometric designs, these carrying cases were used by the Apsáalooke and other tribes to store and transport food and personal possessions. Visually weaving stories across generations, Red Star created this dynamic body of work with bus shelters in mind. Standing as a metaphor for mobility and travel, Red Star draws an association between these suitcases used to transport goods and the buses used to transport people. 

Deerfoot of the Diamond
Monday, Oct. 24, 5:30 p.m. EDT
Clairidge Cinema 4, Montclair, NJ

Deerfoot of the Diamond is a mixed-format documentary collage about the career and legacy of Louis Sockalexis, the first Native American to play major league baseball. Born on the Penobscot Indian Reservation in Old Town, Maine, Sockalexis was signed by the Cleveland Spiders in 1897, becoming the first recognized minority in the sport, some 50 years before Jackie Robinson. Q&A with director Lance Edmands follows the screening. 

Chesapeake American Indian Festival 
Saturday, Oct. 22 — Sunday, Oct. 23
Chesapeake City Park, Virginia 

All are welcome at this family-friendly event hosted by the Nansemond Indian Nation featuring Native American music and dance performances, food, educational exhibitions, and arts and crafts. Performers include Breanna Mayhorses (Shinnecock); Quinton Talbott (Monacan); Clark Stewart (Chickahominy); Maurice Proctor (Piscataway); Stoney Creek (Hollister, NC); and War Paint (Lumberton, NC). Grand entrance starts at noon on both days. Free admission and parking.

“Fine, We’ll Do It Ourselves” Online Panel Discussion Series
Sunday, Oct. 23, 4:00 p.m. CDT

This program explores the use of cultural motifs in the making of film. How much do Native filmmakers feel they must include to ensure funding and audiences without giving up the integrity of the shared cultural information? This panel discusses the question: Why is there a ‘cultural cost’ for Natives to be seen as human beings in films? Indigenous filmmakers and producers discuss this ‘cultural cost’ to make films and succeed in the Hollywood System. Also, what cultural information are Native filmmakers willing to exploit to make it in the filmmaking industry? Complex questions should give rise to deep conversations. 

Panelists include director Nadine Arpin [they] (Red River Michif); award-winning actor, director and producer Trevor Carroll (Wikwemikong First Nation); director Terry Jones (Seneca Nation of Indians), among others. Attendance is free. 

Oregon Origins Project I: Indigenous Voices
Saturday, Oct. 22., 7:30 p.m. PDT
Reed College, Portland, OR

Oregon Origins Project presents a one-of-a-kind gathering of Native American artists and culture bearers from across Oregon exploring the ancient origins of the state through creative expression. 

Join in celebrating Indigenous traditions and creative expression through storytelling, music, poetry, and art. Participating artists and cultural bearers include multidisciplinary artist Jake DePoe (Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians of Oregon); singer and drummer Fred A. Hill, Sr. (Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation); and storyteller Esther Stutzman (Confederated Tribes of Siletz), among others. Admission is free. 

Good Mind Ribbon Skirt Workshop with American Indian Community House
Saturday, October 22, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Sunday, October 23, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Susan and John Hess Family Gallery and Theater, Whitney Museum, New York, NY 

The Whitney Museum is proud to collaborate with its community partner, American Indian Community House, for this two-day workshop teaching how to make a contemporary Native American women’s ribbon skirt. This workshop encourages participants to connect with their heritage, learn and work with others in their community, and represent themselves authentically and as Indigenous to the world at large.

Ribbon skirts are a part of Native American Indigenous regalia that can be worn for ceremonial or social purposes or as daily garment wear. They are a symbol of resilience, sacredness, and survival. While not tribal-specific, the skirt empowers women to be recognized as Indigenous in daily life.

Space for the Good Mind Ribbon Skirt Workshop is limited. This event is free, but registration is required. Please email [email protected] to register.

Native American Culture of the Southeast
Sunday, Oct. 23, 2–4 p.m.
Riverside Park, Roswell, GA 

This special event highlights the cultural significance of Native Americans in the Southeastern United States. The Historic Assets division of the City will partner with Creek descendants Jim and Cody Sawgrass for a Native culture presentation, a display of historical artifacts and a Native American Hoop Dance performance. This event will allow guests to learn more about the Creek and Cherokee people who once called the Chattahoochee River home.

Riverside Park is home to various historical plaques that serve as a memorial for the Cherokee people who once lived along the Chattahoochee River in Roswell. Throughout the event, historic docents will host on-site tours of the Cherokee Memorial located at Riverside Park.

This event is free to attend and designed for all ages to learn more about Southeastern Native American culture, history and connection to Roswell.

Red Canyon Powwow
Oct. 22-Oct. 23
Old Spanish Trail Arena, Moab, UT

The Indigenous Health and Wellness Connections present the 2nd Annual Moab Powwow, a Native American celebration and dance and drum competition in stunning Moab, UT. Dancers, singers and drummers converge together to demonstrate their skills. Participants come from many different Tribes in the Southwest and as far as Canada in full regalia to share their tribes and heritage. Grand entries are on Saturday at noon and 6 p.m.; and on Sunday at noon. General admission is $10. 

Alaska Native Customary Art Fair 
Oct. 20-Oct. 21, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Oct. 23, 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Dena’ina Civic and Convention Center, Anchorage, AK

For more than 30 years, AFN has brought together Alaska Native artisans from all corners of the county to showcase and sell their artwork.

The Alaska Native Customary Art Fair is renowned as one of the best places to find Alaska Native and American Indian artwork from cultures that are vital and rich with history, skill, tradition, adaptation, and creativity. This art showcase is a way of promoting the artists and celebrating our many unique art forms and cultures.

Grounded In Clay: The Spirit of Pueblo Pottery
Oct. 23
Museum Of Indian Arts And Culture, Sante FE, NM

Originating in the cradle of the Indigenous Southwest, Grounded in Clay: The Spirit of Pueblo Pottery is a rare exhibition curated by the Native American communities it represents. The project gives authority and voice to the Pueblo Pottery Collective, a group of more than 60 individual members of 21 tribal communities who selected and wrote about artistically or culturally distinctive pots from two significant Pueblo pottery collections—the Indian Arts Research Center of the School for Advanced Research (SAR) in Santa Fe and the Vilcek Foundation of New York. 

Pueblo Indian pottery has long been exhibited and interpreted in the academic and museum worlds through singular, often generic, points of view: as ethnographic remnants of the archaeological past or as fine art examples aligned with milestones in Western art history and culture.

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