Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Three Indigenous art exhibitions signal a shift in the Twin Cities

On the third floor of the historic Turnblad Mansion, a part of the American Swedish Institute, screenprinted archival photos of Sámi people, who are indigenous to the northernmost parts of Sweden, Finland, Norway and Russia, hang from the ceiling and drawings of a herd of reindeer grace the walls.

"Mygration" portrays the eight seasons of the Sápmi, including the Sámi concept of time and the life of the reindeer, and photos of Sámi immigrants to Alaska around 1900 during a government-sponsored emigration of Sámi and reindeer from Nordic countries to Canada and Alaska. Sámi were offered a chance to teach reindeer husbandry to Inuit people. This installation, which also exists at All My Relations Gallery, emphasizes the ways that migration is an individual and group experience with an emphasis on the "my" aspect.

"When you walk around the installation, you move and the exhibition moves with you, so you are part of a movement that creates time, but also creates the history - the past, present and future," said Swedish artist Stina Folkebrant, who worked on this with Sámi artist Tomas Colbengtson. "How can we handle these three stages? Because we're here now, but we're going to be carrying the history with us."


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