Found in Translation: Native Contemporary Art & Potawatomi Identity with Jason Wesaw: Artist Talk
Jason Wesaw (Potawatomi) is a visual artist from southern Michigan whose minimalist works feature pattern-making, bold colors, and appliqued ornamentation. His themes include the cyclical movements of Mother Earth. Wesaw also works as a peacemaker in his tribal community. In three presentations for the Found in Translation Series, Wesaw will offer an artist talk and slide show about his fine-art work as well as his peacemaking work, an oil-pastel drawing workshop, and a discussion about the importance of cultural teachings and Native identity.
September 7, 6:30-8pm: Session One: Artist Talk & Slide Show
This session focuses on Jason Wesaw’s work in the fine arts, as well as his work with his tribal nation to revitalize cultural traditions. He will discuss the increasing importance of developing lasting partnerships with cultural institutions and organizations.
Learn more about Sessions Two and Three below:
September 14, 6:30-8pm: Session Two: Oil Pastel Workshop
Wesaw will guide participants through the creation of an original oil pastel drawing utilizing simple techniques and affordable art supplies. He will begin by showing examples of his drawing style, which participants can use for inspiration.
Suggested materials, which can be purchased for about $20:
• Oil pastels (12-36 color pack)
• Mixed-media paper (11×17 inches or 17×24 inches)
• Masking tape (blue low-adhesion tape, for masking-off areas of the paper)
• Paper towels, makeup remover pads, or Q-tips ( for blending pastels)
September 21, 6:30-8pm: Session Three: Cultural Teachings
Wesaw will be joined by an elder from the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi to discuss a range of topics, including Native identity; importance of relationships and intergenerational learning; how culture is intertwined with land and place; histories and futures; and the increasing importance of language, the arts, and culturally-specific forms of expression.
Register for all three sessions here.
About Jason Wesaw
Jason Wesaw is a multi-disciplinary artist, creating works in an array of media including ceramics, drawings, textiles, and traditional cultural pieces. His projects are informed by the land and relate stories that are rooted in place and the acknowledgement of spirit. He balances being a maker with working in his tribal community as a Peacemaker, sustaining cultural ceremonies, and sharing traditional knowledge across the Great Lakes. Jason is Potawatomi (Turtle Clan) and lives near the historic Pokagon Potawatomi settlement of Rush Lake, in southwestern Michigan. He has three children and a network of family, friends, and ceremonial relatives from across Turtle Island. He creates art for markets, galleries, & exhibitions, and his work is in the permanent collections of the Eiteljorg Museum (IN), Grand Valley State University (MI), and the Newberry Library (Chicago, IL).
Native Contemporary Art & Potawatomi Identity with Jason Wesaw is presented in partnership with We Are the Seeds.
We Are the Seeds of CultureTrust Greater Philadelphia celebrates and educates about contemporary Indigenous arts and culture, creates opportunities for Indigenous artists, and provides positive and accurate representation for Indigenous peoples.