Above: Chief Buffalo Muralists.
Last year we ran into hiccups in getting approval to paint at our space, and as a result, two of our guest artists ended up needing to drive 19 hours every weekend to and from the mural site (due to the approval happening during the school year). In addition, we lost a lot of time due to delayed approval and weather issues as we worked every weekend from August to October 2021.
This year we plan to finish the murals in their entirety, which includes applying finishing touches to the already started murals, completing the last of a few blank walls, and installing signage at the mural site before we seek more expansions of the project in the coming years.
This year we do not have any additional grant funds for the project but seek community support in whatever amount you can give. We're requesting funds for artist meals, per diem / travel costs, miscellaneous supply costs, documentary film costs, and additional costs associated with installing signage at the site.
About the Mural Project:
The Chief Buffalo Memorial murals exist in a large maze of walls near the lakewalk that connect the newly renamed Gitchi Ode Akiing Park and Downtown Duluth with the lower Canal Park tourism peninsula through a series of ramps and staircases. The murals focus on the journey of Chief Buffalo, a history inaccessible through both art and public space in Duluth. The murals will also feature contemporary imagery of Native people and our existence and connection to the land today.
Villiard, in partnership with the Duluth Indigenous Commission, the Buffalo family, and Zeitgeist Center for the Arts, launched a pilot project in the Summer of 2019 to paint 3 of the 12+ walls in a single day-long event, which was preceded by a ceremony that brought over a hundred native people to the space to bless the project. As the lead artist, Villiard is recruiting other emerging Indigenous artists to assist her in designing the various walls and then we will host public events where everyone is welcome to help us fill in the designs.
Above: Panorama of murals in progress.
"The treaty was not a grant of rights to the Indians, but a grant of rights from them -- a reservation of those not granted." US v. Winans (1905)