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“Rabble” Performance by Marina Eskeets
March 11, 2017 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Be part of this month’s Shallow Gallery artist, Marina Eskeet’s, interactive performance, “Rabble,” celebrating Dine’ life, land and language.
Here’s Marina’s description of the performance:
“Rabble” is a performance that includes four Diné (Navajo)individuals wearing churro sheep masks and greeting other Diné people in downtown Gallup, NM. This modest introduction is intended to reactivate their roll within their culture, through acknowledging their community and themselves. They will walk through the streets motioning people to come toward them and extend their arm for a hand shake, then recite all four of their clans. Sharing ones clans is a form of respect to oneself and all their past mothers. Each performer wears a churro sheep skull mask, moccasins, jewelry, shash belt, and body paint. The body paint is a depiction of mother earth, father sky, mountains, and for the men; tobacco bags. Applying the imagery directly to their skin displays the significance of their physical relationship to the land. The idea of the “black sheep” references the Diné way of life and the alternative meaning of an outsider. For the Diné sheep are a vital component in their daily way of life that connects them to the natural world, to their community and to their culture. A life considerate of the sheep was nomadic, but Catholicism, Christianity, boarding schools, and industrialization has shifted the Diné people in a dramatic way. Their young are growing up in a more modern culture, away from the land. The repercussions have resulted in lateral oppression of each other when one shows interests in their culture. This act of approaching Diné people of all ages, invites them to rekindle their relationship to who they are as Diné, all while a soundtrack is playing with an older Diné woman telling stories about her grandmother and her teachings. She recalls the way her elders carried themselves.