LOOM Indigenous Arts presented its first popup exhibit, "Indigenous Feminist Spatiality: Celebrating Indigenous Knowledges + Bodies" at the University of New Mexico's School of Architecture and Planning (SAP). The exhibit features a range of artists from the Albuquerque community, and what is now known as the greater United States, and features many themes such as community, resilience and celebrating culture.
Building community and showcasing indigenous knowledge production were key features of the exhibit. Community involvement and collaboration were especially important in this event, seeing as it is LOOM Indigenous Arts' first exhibit in Albuquerque.
The LOOM Indigenous Arts Gallery's home is in Gallup, New Mexico. The gallery aims to showcase innovative and contemporary Indigenous artists. Allison Johnson, a master's student at UNM's IDPI, conceived and curated the show.
Laura Harjo, a professor in at the SAP and contributing artist, facilitated the gallery space at UNM. When asked about the collaboration involved in curating the exhibit, Dr. Harjo said the "project is a natural extension of the relationships and dialogue that we (UNM's IDPI) have with community and with one another, such as Native American Community Academy who also participated."
In addition to showcasing artists, the exhibit aims to provide spaces of belonging for indigenous ideas in the university, a place where indigenous knowledge has been historically marginalized. Harjo said that these healing-centered spaces are important in social justice work, and especially in indigenous-centered spaces that are informed by the history of colonization in the United States.
"There a many forms of knowledge, experiences, and ways of being in the world that the broader UNM community needs to see and regard and include in a larger dialogue," Harjo said.
Both the opening reception, and the exhibit as a whole collaborated with artists, the Green Corn Collective, R.I.S.E. Indigenous, the Native American Community Academy and the Indigenous Design and Planning Institute (IDPI) of SAP at UNM.
Sophia Sambrano is a freelance reporter with the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted by email at email@example.com or on Twitter @sambsoph