March 30, 2023
Cultural Identity Politics
Storytelling Bus + Potluck Feast + Talking Circle
Featuring stories from Al Gross and Lupe Castillo,
a talking circle facilitated by Jessica Lopez Lyman, PhD and Ashley Fairbanks,
and artwork by Gordon Coons and Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra
MINNEAPOLIS, MN –  The current exhibition at Intermedia Arts, Dimensions of Indigenous & Cultural Identity Politics, explores the impacts of colonization; tension, distrust, and trauma from generations of relocation, cultural appropriation, assimilation and genocide; and divide and conquer tactics such as tribal enrollment, blood quantum, and erasure that keep our communities divided.
On January 29, community curators Gordon Coons and Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra have created an impactful event empowering audiences to dig deeper into these complex issues:
From 2-3PM, community members can hop on the Storytelling Bus at one of many community locations to listen to and share stories around Indigeneity and cultural politics. Featured storytellers include Al Gross, Lupe Castillo, and more. The bus will drop attendees off at Intermedia Arts.
At 3PM, audiences are encouraged to bring food and enjoy a community potluck feast while taking in the artwork from the visual art exhibition Dimensions of Indigenous & Cultural Identity Politics.
The potluck will flow into a talking circle moderated by Jessica Lopez Lyman, PhD and Ashley Fairbanks, White Earth Nation. This talking circle will feature a diverse panel of artists, educators, and cultural community organizers. In a poignant conversation, we will get honest about dimensions of Indigeneity and cultural identity politics as it relates to our shared liberation.
Audiences are welcome to enjoy one or all of these activities in order to engage more deeply with these important conversations.

These activities are proudly co-presented with the Department of Chicano & Latino Studies at the University of Minnesota, Ce Tempoxcalli, Electric Machete Studios, The Ordway, and Intermedia Arts.

Sliding Scale: $3-10 per person suggested
All proceeds support visual arts programming at Intermedia Arts

          Storytelling Bus + Potluck + Talking Circle: January 29, 2017
          Exhibition Dates: February 16 – April 18, 2017


      Intermedia Arts, 2822 Lyndale Ave South, Minneapolis, MN 55408
      Pick up locations for the storytelling bus are located at multiple community locations.

About the Artists
Exhibition Co-Curator Gordon Coons’ heritage is Ojibwa from Lake Superior Chippewa Band of Wisconsin (from his father) and Ottawa from Michigan (from his mother). He is an enrolled member of the Lac Courte Oreilles Tribe of northern Wisconsin.  Originally from Wisconsin, Gordon is now living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Gordon is a self-taught artist, creating works in a variety of mediums including linoleum block prints, paintings, pen and ink, carvings in stone and wood. Although his artwork is more contemporary, each piece portrays a unique view of traditional native stories, incorporating strong family influences into the image. Gordon is an accomplished artist and has won numerous recognition awards, has work in permanent collections and in galleries throughout the country.
Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra, exhibition Co-Curator, is an emerging interdisciplinary post-modern folk artist, curator, and civic artist working in the intersections of art, culture, community, and equity. Her practice includes visual art, music, dance, and performance with an emphasis on Latinx/Indigenous art methods. Her work lives in the Nepantla or in-between of Christianity and Indigeneity and explores iconography, propaganda, Decolonization, and Liberation Theology.

Rebekah co-founded Electric Machete Studios, a Twin Cities Art and Music cooperative and gallery, where she serves as Artistic director. She writes and performs music as Lady Xok. She also works with Intermedia Arts as curator of the exhibition series Dimensions of Indigenous, uniting Indigenous people of the 4 directions, and with Creative CityMaking Minneapolis addressing systemic inequity. She is self-taught, family-taught, and studied studio art at St. Olaf College and Holtekilen Folkehøgskole in Oslo, Norway. Rebekah has over 10 years experience as a teaching artist in non-profits, churches, and schools sharing cultural storytelling and environmentally-just reuse found-object resquatche techniques.

Ashley Fairbanks, Talking Circle Co-Moderator, is an Anishinaabe woman and citizen of the White Earth Nation. She operates as a socially-conscious designer and public artist. She works with a cohort of artists that do racial justice popular education and organizing. She seeks to use her design skills to activate people around issues ranging from police brutality to environmental justice. She has worked with the Energy Action Coalition, Indigenous Environmental Network and Honor the Earth to create campaigns around the KXL and Sandpiper pipelines and protecting our water from mining. 
Jessica Lopez Lyman, Talking Circle Co-Moderator, received her Ph.D. in Chicana and Chicano Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She studies Midwest Chicanx/Latinx culture and performance. Her manuscript, tentatively titled Midwest Mujeres: Chicana/Latina Performanceexamines racialized and gendered geographies of the Midwest through poetry, theater, hip hop, and visual art. Jessica has been published in Chicana/Latina Studies JournalLabel Me Latina/o, and Praxis: Gender and Cultural Critiques. Her other research interests include Chicana feminisms, decolonial studies, and gentrification.

Jessica is a member of Electric Machete Studios, a Chicanx/Latinx/Indigenous art collective on St. Paul’s West Side. She is working on a multi-media performance piece, Trimmings, about her grandfather, an L.A. barber, and rituals of the home. Jessica has performed at First Avenue, Intermedia Arts, and Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana (MACLA) to name a few. She currently is a Visiting Professor at the University of Minnesota in the Department of Chicano and Latino Studies.

About the Co-Presenters
ABOUT ELECTRIC MACHETE STUDIOS www.electricmachete.comElectric Machete Studios (EMS) is a Twin Cities collective of artists, musicians, dancers, stylists, producers, film makers, fashion designers, curators, teachers, and community organizers working alongside and with one another in the contemporary creative narrative of the [email protected]/Latinx/Indigenous identity and artistic style.

Electric Machete Studios (EMS) is a Twin Cities art and music collective featuring contemporary and experimental work rooted in traditional Latinx and Indigenous art methods. In September 2015, Electric Machete Studios opened a flexible white box gallery in St. Paul. They believe that educating others on traditional art forms is critical for the survival of [email protected]/Latinx/Indigenous histories and cultures. Intergenerational workshops, community art happenings (improvised performance events), and art exhibits serve as the foundation for highlighting social justice issues within our communities. Their work seeks to intervene in cultural displacement and racial inequities by offering alternative spaces, counter narratives, and community building opportunities for [email protected]/Latinx/Indigenous people in the Twin Cities in solidarity with Indigenous people throughout the Americas.

ABOUT CE TEMPOXCALLI | www.ce-t.orgCe Tempoxcalli’s mission is to build healthy communities by revitalizing Indigenous cultural knowledge. It is with a Mexica (Aztec) heart that Ce Tempoxcalli serves Indigenous peoples of the four directions through the program areas of Arts and Culture, Environmental Justice, Health and Wellness, and Community and Youth Development.

ABOUT THE DEPARTMENT OF CHICANO & LATINO STUDIES AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTAThe vision for the Department of Chicano & Latino Studies at the University of Minnesota is inspired by words taken from El Plan de Santa Barbara, the founding document of a national movement to establish Chicano studies at the University: “We take as our credo what Jose Vasconcelos once said at a time of crisis and hope: ‘At this moment we do not come to work for the University, but to demand that the University work for our people.’” To that end, the Department of Chicano & Latino Studies strives to achieve their departmental mission by offering a rigorous undergraduate degree program that is complemented by extensive civic engagement, outreach efforts, and public programming activities.

About Intermedia Arts | 
As Minnesota’s premier multidisciplinary, multicultural arts organization, Intermedia Arts builds understanding among people by catalyzing and inspiring artists to make changes in their lives and communities. We provide creative people of all ages with the opportunities, tools, and support to come together across disciplines, sectors, and boundaries to connect, create, share, collaborate, innovate, think big, and act as catalysts for positive community-driven and community-defined change. We are a nationally recognized leader in empowering artists and community leaders to used arts-based approaches to solve community issues. By stimulating deeper community engagement and providing a platform for the stories and experiences of underrepresented communities locally, nationally, and internationally, we contribute to a stronger, healthier society.
Art. Changes. Everything

Intermedia Arts // 2822 Lyndale Ave South // Minneapolis, Minnesota 55408

612.871.4444 // [email protected]

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund, and a grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation Minnesota

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