How can land acknowledgment spark other ways of knowing, being and listening into action? Argent Kvasnikoff shares the significance of Nichiłt’ana and birch for the Ninilchik Tribe, other materials, colors, the spatial organization of the types of structures that were built in this specific landscape for so long, their seasonal qualities, his work with language, Russian influence on colors, structures, materials as well as Dena’ina wayfinding techniques that inspired his sculpture-in-process, “Tuyanitun”. Thorey Munro discusses recent land acknowledgment work, her search for intelligence in places, creatures, materials, languages and cultures that defy Western/colonial/capitalist/ patriarchy. By acknowledging the long and sustainable partnership between indigenous people and this land, can we unknit the false, linear promise of “progress”, and envision an ancient future?
Argent Kvasnikoff is a visual artist from Ninilchik, Alaska and the current Board President of the Bunnell Street Arts Center in Homer. He is a member of the Ninilchik Village Tribe and is also the planning director of the tribe’s developing cultural institution, the Q’eschił Heritage Center. Kvasnikoff was born in Homer and studied linguistic anthropology and art history, and has experience working for civil and tribal governance organizations. His works address humanist themes illuminated by his indigenous culture and a comparative analysis of contemporary thought and process. Most of his work consists of two-dimensional ink painting and mixed media, but also includes several sculptural installations including the Homer Public Library’s Tuggeht Janju Tets’ and the upcoming installation at Homer’s Bishop’s Beach titled Tuyanitun: Tuggeht. He has had multiple solo exhibitions in various galleries in Alaska and has also shown at invitational exhibitions in the greater United States.
Thorey Munro is an artist, architect and fisherman who spends her winters in Homer, Alaska, and summers in Bristol Bay. She is a board member at Bunnell Street Arts Center. Her work is interested in the fluid entanglements of landscapes, materials, light and time, and the scales and meanings framed through art and design. Her recent mediums include pinhole photography, digital and paper collage, handmade artist books and zines, architecture, and experiments with earth pigments.