Grantee: Kua’aina Associates
Kua’aina Associates is a cultural preservation organization that supports cultural programming across a network of Native artists and organizations, primarily in the Bay Area in California.
Funding for this project supported an artist-in-residency project with 12 emerging indigenous artists who were mentored by a faculty of seven established Native artists and cultural practitioners.
The project began in the summer of 2011 on the campus of San Francisco State University in partnership with the College of Ethnic Studies, American Indian Studies, and the Department of Fine Arts. Native artists ages 21 to 35 participated, working collaboratively in the printmaking studio and on mural panels, now on view in the Mission District. The work was celebrated in an open studio event attended by over 500 people, and at the 15th Annual Urban Youth Festival, attended by over 2000 people. The mural was gifted to the university. Included in the activities were workshops addressing “indigenous visual sovereignty”, Native approaches to design, working with collections and research methods, and portfolio development. This project offered Native students professional development training that included building artistic assets, entrepreneurship, documentation, resume building, and gallery relations in an intensive workshop environment. The project will continue into the future with the cohort of artists gathering in Hawaii to collaborate with Maori artists on Maui.