I Dreamt I Could Fly
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Thu, 07/28/2022 – 16:03
This volley of sixty blue-and-white porcelain arrows suspended in mid-air would surely shatter on impact. By choosing the fragile material, multidisciplinary artist Nicholas Galanin relates the arrows’ loss of function to the ongoing colonization of Indigenous people in the United States. Of Tlingit and Unangax̂ descent, he appropriated the look of historical blue-and-white European ceramics to connect the Indigenous American experience to the exploitative history of international colonial trade networks. An artifact of global trade, this eighteenth-century Dutch jar demonstrates the insidious normalization of oppression in North America. The jar advertises tobacco with romanticized imagery that conflates Native Americans and enslaved Africans whose natural resources and labor were abused in its production.