Week One of the Earth Line Tattoo Training Residency Part 1
The first two weeks of the Earth Line Tattoo Training Residency have been absolutely mind blowing as I have been able to hear the stories of the artists in attendance Dean Hunt, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Amy Malbeuf and Jordan Bennett. These two blog posts will contain a run down of the activities and some of the lessons learned and shared over the first week and another to follow outlining the second week.
The Earth Line Tattoo Training Residency is happening as part of and running concurrently with the The Summer Indigenous Art Intensive Program which is coordinated by the Creative Studies Department at the the University of British Columbia Okanagan. It is an amazing program and this year is hosting “a core group of senior artists: Rebecca Belmore, Lori Blondeau, David Garneau, and Adrian Stimson. It will also include upward of 20 visiting studio artists in residence.”
At the heart of my research is my struggle as an urban indigenous person of mixed ancestry, who wants to locate my sense of self and belonging.
The question of identity in this context is one that is plagued by centuries of colonial genocide on the Indigenous peoples of the America’s and the world over. The reclaiming of an indigenous identity has been necessitated by the following but not limited to them, legislative policies of colonial governments, policies which include residential schools, the arbitrary legal right to tell indigenous peoples who indigenous peoples are, and land theft. As well as the continued colonial mythology of the tests of authenticity and primordiality.
I found a sense of purpose and freedom to explore this topic when I first read through, well maybe not the first time, but as I looked through the UN DRIP, in particular as I read through such articles as eleven section one which states:
“Indigenous peoples have the right to practice and revitalize their cultural traditions and customs. This includes the right to maintain, protect and develop the past present and future manifestations of their cultures, such as archaeological and historical sites, artefacts, designs, ceremonies, technologies and visual and performing arts and literature.”