Eliza Naranjo Morse
Sunrise, Sunset, Sunrise…
Along with a twin brother, Zakary Starr in 1980 to Gregory Morse of Torrington, Connecticut and Nora Naranjo Morse of Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico.
Interests: Learning, figure drawing, farming, house building, emotion, staying hydrated, Ceremony, anthropomorphism, the human experience, color, temporary tattoos, discussion, trash, stretching, partnership, and becoming a good person.
Eliza has shown her work domestically and internationally at Cumbre de el Tajin, (Veracruz, Mexico); Ekaterinburg Museum of Fine Arts, (Ekaterinburg, Russia); Chelsea Art Museum, (New York, New York); SITE Santa Fe (Santa Fe, New Mexico); Axle Contemporary, (Santa Fe, New Mexico); Heard Museum (Phoenix, Arizona); Berlin Gallery (Phoenix, Arizona): School for Advanced Research, (Santa Fe, New Mexico), Eliza currently works in Chimayo, New Mexico.
The world is becoming culturally integrated, filled with technology and overwhelmed with tangible items made of materials that don’t disintegrate. I believe my communities ethnic diversity and celebration of interdependence strengthens our potential to gracefully navigate through this new era with ancestral value systems. Our story, ‘Sunrise, sunset. Sunrise…’, aims to embrace this navigation as an art practice and express the subtle power and endless potential of this long term collaboration with the earth.
It was my intention to acknowledge acts of daily life as art, to recognize that the art practice of social engagement embraces traditional pueblo value systems of renewal, rescoucefulness and relationship, and to apply these value systems to a contemporary context. It is my hope that this recognition will encourage a revival of looking at our relationship to the land around us a creative act. For eight days I will work with my collaborators on ongoing projects that both enhance the communities well being and strengthens it’s capacity to reach out. Projects will included preparing land for faming, planting and food collection, building a co owned cart that carries produce to neighboring communities, collecting material to repurpose at the reservation dump, and mud plastering. These days will be documented with photos and footage, then combined with historical images collected from family and partner museums to illustrate our story during the residencies interview process.
By listening to several elders in my family talk about their thoughts on community, ceremony and change I created intention for my residency. During my residency I continued ongoing projects like preparing a garlic field for oncoming harvest, irrigated vegetables that have been growing for several months and planted corn, carrots, chili and kale with a seeding tool that was purchased with the support of the residency. This tool was used to plant our elderly neighbors corn as well. In other acts of renewal, resourcefulness, and relationship, a mud wall was plastered with my 11 year old pueblo cousin who had never plastered before, a sheep was sheered by several women, and the creation of a tricycle weeder for a neighboring farm was financially supported.
Art by definition of renewal, resourcefulness and relationship is the work of this community. Fields are being farmed, animals raised, adobes made, machinery built, and trash being formed into fine art and tools. The MOCNA residency will by my first formal effort at recognizing this community as a socially engaged artwork that reaches Espánola, Chimáyo, Santa Fe and beyond through food, value systems being shared, and fine artwork.
I believe there is no word for art in the Tewa language because Pueblo people looked at their entire existence creatively. Acts of renewal, resourcefulness and relationship created in collaboration with organic systems are the art forms of ancestors.
Sunrise, Sunset, Sunrise…, in September 2018 is still ongoing. This project provided tools and information to make people’s connection to their land, histories, cultural values, and community stronger.
The artwork cleared a path to remember, celebrate, and acknowledge that before we defined art through western constructs we looked at our entire lives as a creative process.