The Visual Arts Center in New Jersey will be hosting a community opening day to mark the opening of its two fall exhibitions, The First Water is the Body and Athena LaTocha: After the Falls.
The event, which will take place over the Indigenous Peoples Weekend on Saturday, October 9, 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., will include tours of the exhibits; native food samples provided by Buffalo Jump NYC; and performances throughout the day by the Silver Cloud Singers & Dancers, an intertribal Native American song and dance troupe that weaves traditional and contemporary Indigenous songs and dances.
The event will begin at 1:00 p.m. with a blessing and recognition of the land acknowledging that the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is located in Lenapehoking, the ancestral land of the Lenape people, and honoring all Indigenous communities, past, present and future. .
In addition to the day’s events, the Art Center will organize a series of programs throughout the stay of exhibitions at the Art Center, including tours led by a curator; a series of community workshops led by Arts Educator in Residence, Dennis RedMoon Darkeem; a film screening, artist talks and additional programs. To help with the vision, scope and content of this programming, VACNJ formed an advisory committee which included Diane Fraher (Osage / Cherokee), filmmaker and founder and director of AMERINDA Inc .; David Bunn Martine (Shinnecock / Montauk / Chiricahua Apache), Director and Curator, Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum, Shinnecock Reservation; and Dennis RedMoon Darkeem (Yamasee Creek-Seminole Native American), artist and arts educator. You can find more information about these programs and the opening day by visiting artcenternj, org.
All community programs associated with the Water First is the Body exhibit are generously funded by the New Jersey Council for the Humanities.