Tashina navigates the edge of two worlds and developed fluidity between the two: the small town Native girl from the rez and the city cosmopolitan, now in New York City. Her work is the raw edges, at the where those two worlds meet. The attention to each space, the blessing to move about these spaces, but also the dangerousness that exists of power on the rez and the western world separately and combined. At the limit of each, there in the middle is where she doesn’t entirely feel apart. Representing that rawness, her own uncensored truth, and purposeful imperfections is distinct in all creations.
The Celebration of the Lack of Men in my Life
After thinking about the one day this kid project and now celebrations, I immediately thought of the milestones I have accomplished and the relationship that surrounds me in celebrations when celebrating those completed steps in my life. My project will celebrate the moments and people who have created me and defined me. Particularly the men who have entered my life briefly and in celebratory style thank them through short narratives. Their essence and presence although short-lived or not well known will be captured in small books, the cover adorned in my cultural medicines. As a Native American, our four medicines mean holistic healing and I want the books, although tragic and bitter, to represent that similar hope, a healing journey.
Tobacco, Cedar, Sage, Sweetgrass, Copper, Paper, Acrylic
7" x 4.5"
Seven chiffon pieces to hold the seven women of my inner circle of strength and struggle, woven elegance and damage. My cousins, aunties, sisters, and mother dressed across from deep frozen waters of Lake Superior in Zeba, MI where my mother and aunties grew up. We did our makeup together and I made sure to bring an immense collection of my own jewelry, which anything they wore they were able to have after. An offering for their time and help in the project. My poems and short proses adorning the woman who raised me and the future generations, we too, will one day effect.
My mother’s handwriting was such an important piece, representing a thread between all the pieces. She is similar in the way, a thread that ties us together. The Ojibwe floral layer is the bond between the women, but my mother’s words, some in Ojibwe, are the realistic spots creating a decolonized version of the map, a fabric framework of place. A bit of her being, reclaiming her voice.
I amplify, disguise and share the complex narratives of hurt and hope with stacked layers, to beautifully burden the viewer. The reader is forced to look deeper. A strategic transparency the viewer will have to work for. Every part is intentions.
27" x 18"
Voices - Indigeneity in NYC
Kimmel Center of New York University
New York City, NY
March - September 2019
Four Medicine Medallion
Asemaa. Tobacco. Giizhik. Cedar.
Mashkodewashk. Sage. Wiingashk. Sweet Grass.
Although ceremonies differ from First Nation to First Nation, basic beliefs remain similar. Our medicine bundles carry sacred knowledge and contain ingredients to spiritual well being. These powerful religious objects represent faith in a tangible way and transcend into modernity through cultural exchange and societal development. Traditional Healing is the restoring of balance to the mind, body, spirit and emotions. There needs to be harmony and balance in us just as there is in all of Creation. When you start on a healing journey, you are making a commitment to help yourself, your family and your community. Great respect is shown for the plants that are used in this specific healing. The "Four Medicines Medallion" is an embellishment that contributes to the physical act of finding faith in a time when cultural identities are becoming blurry. The unique medicine pouch is a bicultural composite of an exchange and revamped further to a multifaceted object set into today’s medicinal context. There is a need for cultural support in our new contemporary setting and this pedant defines that.
Tobacco, Cedar, Sage, Sweetgrass, Leather, Acrylic
3" x 9"
Mujeres de Maiz Annual Visual Art Exhibit at
March 9 – April 5, 2019
Los Angeles, CA
Language: The Human Quintessence
The centerpiece of our collection is a large mural on our fourth floor. Mark Tucker, Art Director for a neighborhood student program, the Lloyd Hall Scholars Program, and founder of Festifools, a popular local event, invited students to design and create a 1,235-square foot mural. This mural is now installed in the 4th Floor Atrium at Palmer Commons, a location visible from many positions both inside and outside the building. Tucker explains that in designing the mural, several students were guided by the theme of language. More importantly, though, all of the students who created this mural “exercised their visual language skills throughout.” The title of the mural, 'Language: The Quintessence,' reflects this focus. The vibrant mural provides a creative and transformative ambiance in one of our favorite spots in our building and is one of our most ambitious and striking examples of community-based student work.
Acrylic Paint on Canvas
1,235 square foot
Palmer Commons of University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI
Winter 2012 - Present