BADLAND: Rebecca Belmore, Lori Blondeau, Bonnie Devine, and Erica Lord
June 26, 2009 – January 31, 2010
The Museum of Contemporary Native Arts exhibit BADLAND: Rebecca Belmore, Lori Blondeau, Bonnie Devine, and Erica Lord features Native women artists who are known for their experimental video, installation and performance work. The exhibit will explore the ever-changing nature of land, bringing attention to issues of sovereignty, destruction and culture as those relate back to the land and its inhabitants. BADLAND will open with a special preview for Museum members June 26, 2009 from 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. (with artists present!). A public opening reception occurs that same evening from 5 – 7 p.m. The show remains on display until January 31, 2010.
Belmore was Canada’s official representative at the 2005 Venice Biennale and has exhibited widely around the U.S. and Canada, including New Mexico’s SITE Santa Fe. InBADLAND, she will install a video called “March 5, 1819.” The piece is based on the story of Demasduit. In the early morning of March 5, 1819, a group of European merchants surprised a sleeping band of Beothuk Indians on Red Indian Lake in Central Newfoundland. When the Indians tried to flee across the frozen lake, a woman named Demasduit, carrying her 2-day old infant, fell behind the others. Her husband Nonasabasut, who was also the chief, ran back twice, first to carry their baby to safety, and finally to rescue his wife. Although unarmed, he was shot and killed at point blank range. Demasduit was taken into captivity, and eventually to St. John’s, where she lived for several months as a guest of Governor Charles Hamilton.
Devine is the recipient of several awards including the Robert Markle Scholarship, the Norman Jewison Prize for First Nations Visual Art, the S.L. Simpson Portfolio Award and the 2002 Arts Toronto Protégé Award in Visual Art. She will be installing a video and writing for BADLAND. Titled “U308 Yellow Cake,” the piece deals with yellow cake uranium mining as it’s occured from the Canadian north to the hillsides of Los Alamos, New Mexico.
Blondeau is a performance artist who has been internationally exhibited with pieces like “We Want to be Just Like Barbie-That Bitch has Everything.” In BADLAND, she will exhibit a series of photographed performance tableau’s that she completed with Adrian Stimson, “Putting the Wild Back into the West, circa 2007.” Blondeau will be creating brand new prints from the negatives of the original series.
Lord is known for work that challenges viewers, like her recent “Artifact Piece, Revisited” performance at the National Museum of the American Indian in which she replicated James Luna’s 1987 “Artifact Piece” using her body as the subject matter. A College of Contemporary Arts alumna, her contribution to BADLAND will include an installation of prayer bundles made from the red cloth of the United State’s Star Spangled Banner.