Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

First Nations Awards Native Arts Initiative Grants Totaling $545,600


February 13, 2018

LONGMONT, Colorado (February 9, 2018) – First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) awarded 17 Supporting Native Arts grants and 11 professional development mini-grants to Native American tribes and organizations under First Nations’ Native Arts Initiative (NAI). Launched in early 2014, the long-term goal of the NAI is to support the perpetuation and proliferation of Native American arts, cultures and traditions as integral to Native community life. Funding for this project is provided in part by Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies.

The purpose of the NAI grants is to strengthen the enabling environments in which First Nations’ grantees are operating to support emerging and established Native artists and sustain traditional Native arts. Under the NAI, grantees receive organizational and programmatic resources, including direct grants and technical assistance and training, to support their increased control of assets across five asset groups – institutional assets, arts and cultural assets, human capital, social assets, and economic assets. First Nations believes that by strengthening these assets, our grantees will be better positioned to continue their vital work of facilitating the sharing of traditional artistic knowledge between generations and, ultimately, the perpetuation and proliferation of Native arts in their communities.

The recent Supporting Native Arts grantees are:

Bois Forte Heritage Museum, Tower, Minnesota, $32,000 – Local artists will design and teach traditional arts workshops to community members to address and ensure intergenerational transfer of knowledge of important Bois Forte art forms. The project will also be focused on increasing access to arts supplies needed by local artists. Finally, the project will strengthen the governance and mission of the tribe’s museum by supporting a strategic planning process for the board of directors.

Dakota Wicohan, Morton, Minnesota, $32,000 – Through Dakota Wicohan’s Tawokaga (Art) Apprenticeships program, participants will learn from the community’s master artists via a traditional master/apprentice relationship. Dakota Wicohan provides the physical and financial resources these artists need for their craft, as well as opportunities for both student and master to display their work in sponsored art exhibits. Specifically, the project will serve youth and adults who are new to horse regalia, providing them with the opportunity to learn traditional techniques and the knowledge to create two pieces of horse regalia, present their finished art pieces at several events, and travel to the opening exhibit of the Oceti Sakowin Horse Exhibit.

Diné be’ iiná, Inc., Shiprock, New Mexico, $32,000 – Diné be’ iiná is dedicated to promoting economic self-sufficiency with sheep wool and sheep culture. Currently, Diné be’ iiná provides support and technical assistance to community "spin-off groups" across the Navajo Nation. These are locally-led, informal cross-generational groups of sheep herders and wool-fiber artists meeting monthly to exchange knowledge about shepherding and hands-on learning of new fiber art techniques. During the course of this project, three spin-off groups will foster at least three apprenticeships who will receive training in traditional fiber arts techniques, marketing, entrepreneurship, leadership, and wool production.

Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Sawyer, Minnesota, $28,200 – The goal for this project is to bring local Native artists from the Fond du Lac community who specialize in a wide array of traditional Native art forms into the Sawyer Community Center on a set weekly schedule to share their skills and knowledge in a formal classroom setting with 15 local Native youth who are members of the Sawyer Ogichidaag Club.

Jemez Community Development Corporation, Jemez Pueblo, New Mexico, $32,000 – The Sharing Our Wisdom (SOW) program will create an opportunity for tribal members who are artists to enhance their ability to share their arts knowledge and expand the appreciation of Jemez arts and culture through workshops and classes. Facilitating these workshops through SOW will better enable these self-driven individuals to incorporate the history of the Hemish arts and culture through the historic lens of the Jemez people.

Lower Sioux Indian Community, Morton, Minnesota, $32,000 – Through Tanyan Unspepi, Cansa'yapi Cultural Department (CCD) will begin gathering the community’s cultural arts from tribal families and artists by engaging and strengthening the relationships with the community’s families and by continuing to foster relationships with tribal artists. During the project period, the CCD will conduct a Cultural Skills Inventory to create a catalogue of the community’s artists for future programming and will sponsor introductory workshops for preserving and digitizing art. The CCD will also seek donations of digital images to share with the community and evaluate and celebrate the project through video interviews with artists and families and through the display of donated works in the community. The newly donated digital materials will be used to create the first-ever digital cultural archive for Cansa'yapi.

Makah Cultural and Research Center (MCRC), Neah Bay, Washington, $32,000 – This project will target Makah master artists and intergenerational emerging Makah artists. Through professional observation, informal oral and formal written surveys, the MCRC has identified Cultural Community Assets and found that there are limited master artists in the Makah community. This project will provide an opportunity for the master artists to share and transfer their skills and knowledge with emerging apprentice artists. This project will revitalize the Ozette-style of basketry and other artwork that isn't currently being used very much because of limited access to the collections. Project participants will have expanded access to the Ozette Collection as a result of this project.

Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, Auburn, Washington, $32,000 – This project will serve the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe’s community and will continue to build on the arts inherent to the Muckleshoot people who have for centuries implemented art into their daily lives before the word "art" became a word. Art is not a stand-alone program to the Muckleshoot people; rather, it is their way of life. This program will provide a forum at the tribe to lead educational Native arts classes and workshops. Local Muckleshoot artists and other Native artists will lead and teach classes to youth and adults age 16 and above.

Northwest Native Development Fund (NNDF), Coulee Dam, Washington, $32,000 – Creating a growing foundation for Native artists on the Colville and Spokane reservations, NNDF will provide group entrepreneurial training for Native artists, technical assistance and strategic planning, and promote entrepreneurial opportunities for the artists. NNDF will procure and manage an artist gallery and also host two Native art shows on the Colville reservation, providing a professional platform for the artists to showcase their work. The project will also facilitate three artist-facilitated sessions in which established artists will be matched with emerging artists to train in-studio. It will also allow community members to engage with the artists and view the creative process firsthand.

Pine Ridge Area Chamber of Commerce, Kyle, South Dakota, $32,000 – The Pine Ridge Area Chamber of Commerce (PRACC) intends to expand Native American arts and artist capacity as well as the proliferation of traditional Native arts on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation by instituting an artist-in-residency program at the Pine Ridge Visitor Center. PRACC will host 12 Native artists for one-week shows in the summer of 2018. Each artist will also assist a junior artist or apprentice during their show. Of the 12 junior artists, one will be selected as the 13th artist-in-residence at the end of the summer and will receive a paid booth at the Rapid City Winter Art Market in November 2018.

Pueblo of Pojoaque, Santa Fe, New Mexico, $30,600 – This Poeh Cultural Arts program will teach approximately 50 Pojoaque Tribal Youth the ancient art of traditional ceremonial regalia-making. Instruction will be by Pojoaque traditional leaders and supported by other tribal member volunteers. The regalia-making will closely follow Pojoaque tradition.

Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians, Valley Center, California, $18,300 – The Wa$xayam Pomki Museum’s Native Art Summer Project will engage the local Native community with the arts by serving as a pillar for intergenerational interactions. All traditional Luiseño arts classes will be taught by the community’s artists and open for enrollment for local tribal members, their descendants and neighboring Cahuilla and Kumeyaay communities.

Sacred Pipe Resource Center, Bismarck, North Dakota, $32,000 – Native Artists United (NAU) is a group of Native artists located in the Bismarck-Mandan area of North Dakota representing all tribes of North Dakota and some tribes of South Dakota. Under this project, the Sacred Pipe Resource Center will continue working with the NAU in formalizing an artist cooperative, which will support artist members with marketing and sales utilizing Native-based principles. The NAU will also expand its partnership with the Thusweca Beading & Cultural Academy, a youth artist group, to provide artist-to-artist peer mentoring and ensure the sharing of traditional art forms between several generations.

Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians, Santa Ynez, California, $26,500 – The Chumash Culture Department has worked with the Chumash community for 11 years to bring knowledge bearers into programming for the community. The project will help return traditional basketry to the community for all ages by bringing in a master basketweaver to teach basketry classes throughout the project period. The project will also support at least five basketweavers in their efforts to make and show their baskets at the Annual 2018 California Indian Basketweavers event.

United Indians of All Tribes Foundation, Seattle, Washington, $32,000 – The Urban Native Artists Cohort will provide business development, communications skills, and exhibition training to regional Native artists through a series of workshops. Selected participating artists will provide paid classes in their realm of Native arts to varied sectors of the Native community. Participating artists will also present at least two exhibits during the course of the year in United Indians' Sacred Circle Gallery.

Utah Diné Bikéyah, Salt Lake City, Utah, $32,000 – The Navajo, Hopi, Zuni, Ute Mountain Ute, and Ute Indian Tribes hold deep ties to the geography in Bears Ears National Monument. This project will work with Native artists in the Four Corners area (New Mexico, Utah, Colorado, and Arizona) to conduct an Arts Assessment and Arts Infrastructure Plan. This plan will involve interviewing artists, mapping their ties to the land of the Bears Ears National Monument, building a database of artists, arts champions and arts resources in the area, and reviewing policies for impact on traditional arts. The project will also extend the organization’s artist-in-residence program.

Woodland Boys & Girls Club, Neopit, Wisconsin, $32,000 – This project's goal is to educate the Menominee Tribe’s youth and community on traditional Menominee arts while promoting local Native artists. The organization will plan and host a series of artist-led arts classes designed to pass on traditional knowledge and wisdom to the youth and community. Participants will learn how to harvest natural materials specific to the region and design baskets, lacrosse sticks, and other traditional arts forms, which will be exhibited at the end of the project. Last, the project will begin working with artists to explore developing a stronger market to promote, advertise and to sell their work.

2017-18 professional development grantees are:

Indian Pueblo Cultural Center (IPCC), Albuquerque, New Mexico, $1,500 – Through the Power of We Fundraising and Sustainability training, the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center (IPCC) was able to begin developing a framework to tell the organization’s "Pueblo Story" for use in all of the organization’s development initiatives. IPCC staff who attended the training also gained insight on how other Native American organizations are controlling their message and leveraging relationships to build and fund successful programs/projects. This professional development grant also positioned the IPCC to begin building a realistic funding framework and better identify its strategy.

Keya Foundation, Eagle Butte, South Dakota, $1,700 – Through the Power of We Fundraising and Sustainability training, the Keya Foundation’s director was able to learn about relevant fundraising strategies for the organization and train the organization’s Board of Directors to increase its capacity to participate in the organization’s fundraising activities.

Little Eagle Arts Foundation (LEAF), Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, $1,600 – The LEAF director will attend a three-day course, "Managing Your Capital Campaign," conducted by Indiana University's Lilly Family School of Philanthropy in Phoenix, Arizona. The course will provide the LEAF director with a baseline knowledge of the concepts and terminology of the field of fundraising and also help the director determine LEAF's readiness for capital fundraising, plan a capital campaign from preparation to celebration, develop gift range charts as development tools, cultivate volunteer leadership, and integrate capital fundraising in the organization's development plan.

LOOM Indigenous Gallery (gallupArts), Gallup, New Mexico, $5,000 – The LOOM Indigenous Gallery Advisory Council received an intensive Strategic Planning Training which positioned the Advisory Council, as one of a few Native-controlled arts organizations in Gallup, to be a strong co-collaborator with Native artists and bring underrepresented perspectives and voices to the table in an effort to facilitate peer-to-peer opportunities between Native artists in the region and support artist-in-residence opportunities.

Menominee Tribe of Wisconsin, Keshena, Wisconsin, $1,700 – The tribe’s museum director participated in the 2017 Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries and Museums annual conference to enhance and expand the Menominee Museum's current strategies for revitalizing and promoting culture and the arts, Native artists, entrepreneurship, and their connection with the community.

Native Americans for Community Action, Inc. (NACA), Flagstaff, Arizona, $3,000 – A NACA staff member attended the Power of We Fundraising and Sustainability training to provide staff with the opportunity to gain the skills needed to help the organization in fundraising and to explore more diverse revenue streams so that the organization is not as reliant on federal grants.

Stockbridge-Munsee Band, Bowler, Wisconsin, $2,500 – The Stockbridge-Munsee Museum staff are the caregivers of the tribe's traditional art forms. This professional development grant supported the participation of the tribe’s museum staff in the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museum’s 2017 annual conference and increased their capacity to care for cultural items in the library/museum's collection. The manager has utilized the new ideas gained from the conference during the planning of exhibits and the retention of artwork, and the conference has helped the library/museum better serve the Native artists and traditional Native arts in the Stockbridge-Munsee Community by making the library/museum manager more aware of the arts in the community and giving information on how to incorporate their art into the library/museum.

Tulalip Foundation, Tulalip, Washington, $1,500 – The foundation’s executive director participated in the Power of We Fundraising and Sustainability training to help increase the organization’s knowledge of developing and sustaining cultural and arts programs from a financial standpoint. Staff have been able to leverage this additional knowledge to increase the organization's capacity to implement additional programming and policies that empower community well-being through the continued sharing of cultural and artistic traditions and practices.

Tulalip Foundation (Tulalip Hibulb Cultural Center), Tulalip, Washington, $1,700 – The curator of the Tulalip Tribes’ Hibulb Cultural Center attended the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museum’s 2017 annual conference to learn about improving the effectiveness of the Hibulb Cultural Center's exhibitions for visitors to the center and the community’s artists who exhibit their art work in the center.

Warm Springs Community Action Team (WSCAT), Warm Springs, Oregon, $3,000 – One artist and one WSCAT staff member attended the Power of We Fundraising and Sustainability Training in order to increase awareness of nonprofit development best practices, especially those related to revenue development, for their emerging artist cooperative. Through this training, staff have gained a basic understanding of financial stability and will position the emerging organization to begin building a strong foundation for development.

Woodland Indian Art, Inc. (WIA), Green Bay, Wisconsin, $2,800 – The WIA executive administrator and board president participated in the Power of We Fundraising and Sustainability training to support the organization's newly-formed fundraising committee in developing fundraising strategies and a plan of action for fundraising next steps.


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