BIGFORK — The Bigfork Arts and Cultural Center (BACC) has collaborated with Love Lives Here and their "Indigenous Allies of Flathead Valley" team to bring together Indigenous women, Two-Spirit, transgender and nonbinary artists together to showcase their artistic genius.
"A lot of times, Indigenous people are seen as victims or needing of assistance, and they wanted to do an event that really showcased their creative genius and their strength," said Love Lives Here community organizer Cherilyn DeVries.
She noted that having the 14 artists from seven tribal nations tell their own stories is important and that's exactly why BACC was adamant that the show happens.
"It is absolutely vital to be able to have an outlet for Indigenous women to showcase their art and express themselves through their creations,” said BACC executive director Laura Hodge.
The art pieces on display are not limited to just charcoal and watercolor.
“The poetry is unreal...it's about resilience, and that comes through in almost every one of these artworks that you see, it's amazing,” Hodge told MTN News.
The BACC had envisioned a showcase similar to Expressions of Resilience last year, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic they had to postpone the show.
“We didn't want to wait another year or two. We had a longer time to plan, and we pulled it together really quickly," Hodge explained. "This whole show came together in about eight weeks."
DeVries shared sentiments of the incredible art pieces and poetry. "The fact that this is happening -- the fact that we have partners to do this. We are just thrilled that this beautiful, powerful work is able to be displayed in the Flathead Valley," said DeVries.
The Show will be open until June 26 and is free to the public in Bigfork. Click here to check out a photo gallery featuring some of the exhibits that are on display.
Below is a list of all of the artists and poets, and which tribal nation they belong to:
- Alyne Eickert, Cree
- Barbara Schelling, Assiniboine
- Dre Castillo (they/them), Navajo
- Lindy Racine, Blackfeet
- Lydia Spotted Eagle – Ikiinaipoyakii, Blackfeet
- Margaret Cook, Cree
- Salisha Old Bull, Salish-Crow
- Sammy Bird – Blackfeet
- Terrisa Olson, Crow
- Valentina Lapier, Blackfeet
- Whitney Top Sky, Chippewa-Cree
- Claire Charlo, Salish Kootenai
- Corrina Stasso, Salish Kootenai