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G. Peter Jemison: Iroquois Creation Story—Reception
Thu, February 13, 2020, 4:30 pm–7:00 pm
This exhibition features colored pencil drawings and 3-D works by renowned contemporary Native artist G. Peter Jemison (Seneca, Heron Clan) created in preparation for his film Iroquois Creation Story, which will be screened in the Helen Hardin Media Gallery. The film and artworks are inspired by John Mohawk’s (Seneca) 2005 publication Iroquois Creation Story and Chief John Arthur Gibson’s (Seneca) more detailed 1898 version of the creation story, published in 1928. Jemison collaborated with Friends of Ganondagan, Garth Fagan Dance, and graduate students from the Rochester Institute of Technology School of Film and Animation on the film—which includes 2-D and 3-D animated and live action scenes. The dances were performed by traditional Iroquois dancers and dancers from Garth Fagan Dance. Brent Michael Davids (Stockbridge Munsee) composed the film music. The 17-minute film tells the story of Sky Woman and her grandsons Flint and Sky Holder. The story’s message is about balance between forces on the earth and gratitude towards the unique position of Turtle Island in the universe.
Jemison earned a BS in Arts Education and an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Art from Buffalo State College. His works are included in major collections such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, Heard Museum,Phoenix, Institute of American Indian Arts Museum, Santa Fe, Denver Art Museum, Denver, British Museum, London, UK, and Museum der Weltkultern, Frankfurt, Germany. Jemison is also an esteemed curator and writer. In 2004, he was elected Board Member at Large of the American Alliance of Museums (formerly the Association of Museums), and was the founding director of the American Indian Community House Gallery in New York City.