Birds of a Feather: Native California Indian Art – April 29 – June 13, 2021
Birds of a Feather featured the works of local Native California Indian artists Jeremy Peconom, Meyo Marrufo, Kai LaPena, and Jaime Lanouette.
Brought to you in partnership with concept: art + movement, a project of Arts and Culture El Dorado’s Arts Incubator program, Birds of a Feather offered a glimpse into the practice of Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and the continuum of California Native Cultural Arts. This exhibition featured the post-contact utilitarian artistry of Jeremy Peconom (Mt. Maidu), alongside fellow TEK practitioners Meyo Marrufo (Eastern Pomo), Kai LaPena (Wintu) and Jaime Lanouette (Nisenan).
“As a Native California Indian artist,” states Peconom, “the title of this art show was carefully chosen to express the internal connection all California Native Indians have with our environment and traditional lands. Although we have many distinct cultural differences in dialects within California, one thing remains constant and true. As California Natives we are all interconnected, not just through genetics, but spiritually with our generational connection to Mother Earth. So in essence we are all feathers from the same bird.”
The works on display embodied the gifts of the land and the artist’s transformative labor. This gathering of individuals, ranging from emerging artists to well-known practitioners, provided a glimpse into the Tribal landscapes of the region and the active connections that have been maintained for millennia. From pre-and post-contact utilitarian tools, garments, adornment, and regalia, to contemporary digital illustrations, the exhibition offered a unique opportunity to appreciate the depth of relationship of the artists to their materials, and to each other. Not only do Peconom, Marrufo, LaPena, and Lanouette share in common their ancestral ties to the land, as students and teachers, they are also connected through their contributions to the continuous flowering of contemporary cultural arts in the region.