Smithsonian’s NMAI teams with three organizations to celebrate the work of indigenous filmmakers The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI), in conjunction with Taos Talking Pictures, the Institute of American Indian Arts and Plan B, will present Native Showcase 2001, a series featuring the best in works by and about American Indians. The event represents the first time the NMAI’s Film and Video Center has presented event an outside the East Coast.
The NMAI’s Native Cinema Showcase 2001, which takes place August 15-19, includes a program with featured artist Victor Masayesva Jr., a renowned Hopi filmmaker and photographer, who will present his classic Imagining Indians, as well as the premiere of a new video, The Color of Wilderness and a series of slides exploring the nature of time. Chris Eyre, director of the landmark film Smoke Signals, will show in public, for the first time, scenes from his upcoming film, Skins, starring Graham Greene.
“The National Museum of the American Indian is extremely pleased to present and showcase during Santa Fe’s Indian Market some of the newest and most creative Native films,” said Rick West, the director of NMAI. “This event is very much in keeping with the museum’s ongoing programs to encourage and utilize the talents of Native filmmakers and to share their media with both Native and mainstream American communities.”
Other programs include: * The Doe Boy: Winner of the Perrier “Bubbling Under” Award at the 2001 Taos Talking Picture Festival, this debut feature by Randy Redroad offers a moving and insightful portrait of a sensitive young man finding his way in a world where blood matters.
* House Made of Dawn: Adapted from N. Scott Momaday’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, this 1972 film (shown in a rare 35mm print) examines the loss and reclaiming of identity of a young Native man. Actor/composer (and noted storyteller) Larry Littlebird will discuss the film with Momaday following the screening.
* Bearwalker: Shirley Cheechoo won the best director award at the ReelWorld Festival for this drama about the racism and abuse that explode into the lives of four sisters.
* Alcatraz Is Not an Island: Jim Fortier’s award-winning film tells the story of one of the most important civil rights actions of the 1960s - the takeover of Alcatraz - which helped launch the so-called “Red Power” movement.
* Filmmakers’ panel: A live discussion of the challenges facing Native filmmakers as they attempt to tell their stories using film and video.
* Indian Humor: a collection of short, Native-produced comedies from the NMAI archives. “The directors, actors, writers, and cultural activists whose work is being shown this week in Santa Fe bring to their work such originality and talent,” said Elizabeth Weatherford, the head of NMAI’s Film and Video Center. “The heart of this year’s Showcase is in the way fiction can move us to new understandings, thrill or sadden us, and leave us with a sense of being on journeys we might otherwise never have taken.”