The Waves Can Be Heard
An image of the Grandmother moon (Nokomis), fire, earth, water, and the jingle dress dance entwined in swirling colors, Madweyaashkaa celebrates the resilience of Indigenous women on a spectacular scale.
Madweyaashkaa: Waves Can Be Heard in Duluth
June 17, 18 and 19
9:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. each night
Free, family friendly and open to the public
@ Washington Rec Center
310 N 1st Ave W, Duluth MN
Event sponsored by Duluth Public Arts and Commission and the City of Duluth
About the Project
“This is my first creation using animation as the main medium, and it’s really wild and humbling to think that it’s going to debut on such a large and public surface. I’ve really just been honored to work with so many wonderful folks to bring this immersive experience to life, especially during such a chaotic personal and societal moment in time. I sincerely hope the piece literally illuminates a message of hope and clarity for whomever needs to hear it..”
Madweyaashkaa: Waves Can Be Heard made its debut in February 2021 on the 49-foot tall chamber of the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam. Spectators came together and celebrated the resilience of Indigenous women on a spectacular scale. An animation projected onto the 400 x 49 foot wall of the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam was synced with a soundscape featuring music by Lyz Jaakola (Fond du Lac Band of Ojibwe) and a recorded narrative by Dakota/Ojibway First Nation elder Millie Richard. Smaller
Viewers will also find small video projections with flickers of imagery from the main video distributed around the lock.
With images of the Grandmother moon (Nokomis), fire, earth, water, and the jingle dress dance entwined in swirling colors, the piece will explore themes of homecoming and finding connection within ourselves to culture, to ancestors, and to nature, no matter how far away we may sometimes feel. From an Ojibwe perspective, it is as a reminder that Nokomis is always around, an elder always ready for us to reach out and willing to hear what’s in our hearts.
"This is my first creation using animation as the main medium, and it’s really wild and humbling to think that it’s going to debut on such a large and public surface. I’ve really just been honored to work with so many wonderful folks to bring this immersive experience to life, especially during such a chaotic personal and societal moment in time. I sincerely hope the piece literally illuminates a message of hope and clarity for whomever needs to hear it." - Moira Villiard
A note on place and language:
Owmani-yomni is ‘whirlpool’ in the Dakota language. Gakaabika is ‘severed rock’ in the Ojibwe language. Both are the names of the place where the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam currently sits, in the homelands of the Dakota.
Prior to colonial settlement, the Dakota lived along Owamni-yomni / Gakaabika and Ojibwe,Ho-Chunk, and other nations traveled through that place. It was and still is an important and sacred place to Dakota, Ojibwe, Ho-Chunk, and Indigenous peoples currently living here.
What To Expect:
This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.
Viewing of Madweyaashkaa will work like a gallery visit where visitors stroll around the perimeter of the lock chamber to view the projections. Chairs are not allowed.
This is an industrial federal facility where pets, alcohol, and smoking are not permitted.
Kids under 12 need to be supervised by an adult at all times. Strollers are not allowed on the lock.
Accessibility: there are three steps to reach the lock wall. There is also a fully accessible entrance. Please ask staff for assistance if you need to use the accessible entrance.
Some surfaces at the lock are metal grates; please wear appropriate shoes.
This event will take place entirely outdoors next to the Mississippi River in February, so dressing for the weather will give you the best experience! You can expect to be outside for at least 15 minutes.
One accessible portable restroom will be on site.
COVID-19 Safety Protocol:
If you are not feeling well, or think you might have been exposed to COVID-19, please stay home to keep your community safe.
This event will take place entirely outdoors.
This is a timed entrance event and registration is required. No more than 250 people will be allowed on the outdoor structure at a time.
Mask: Please wear a mask upon arrival and for the duration of your time at the event.
Social Distance: Keep a distance of 6+ feet from anyone who is not a part of your household, including the artists, park rangers, and staff.
If a viewing area is crowded, please wait until there is enough space for you to safely step forward. The video will run on a 10-minute loop, leaving plenty of time to view the entire projection.
ABOUT THE MISSISSIPPI NATIONAL RIVER AND RECREATION AREA
In 1988, a National Park was created to enhance the significant values of the waters and land of the Mississippi River corridor within the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Known as the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, the park extends for more than 70 miles along the river, running directly through a metropolitan area (the park corridor begins in Ramsey and Dayton and ends just south of Hastings). The park provides leadership, acting as a facilitator and coordinator, in promoting a common vision for river corridor management among 25 municipalities and numerous partner agencies and organizations, whose responsibilities intersect. Learn more at nps.gov/miss.
ABOUT MISSISSIPPI PARK CONNECTION
Mississippi Park Connection is the charitable, nonprofit partner of the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area. Its mission is to strengthen the enduring connection between people and the Mississippi River by enriching the life of the river and the lives of all who experience our national park.
Mississippi Park Connection works with partner community groups and individuals across the Twin Cities to create meaningful and exciting experiences at the river. Learn more at parkconnection.org
ABOUT ALL MY RELATIONS ARTS
All My Relations Arts is an initiative of NACDI (Native American Community Development Institute), an intermediary organization that envisions a community in which all American Indian people have a place, purpose, and a future strengthened by sustainable community development.
All My Relations Arts presents the work of American Indian contemporary artists and fills a critical space in the Twin Cities arts community, providing high-quality gallery space and consistently recognized shows that raise up Native arts from this region and provide access for Native artists. As well as hosting/ co-presenting events in the community to bring arts practices to youth and elders and all through creations of murals, art cars, through classes, tours, artists talks, and more. Learn more at http://www.allmyrelationsarts.com/
ABOUT NORTHERN LIGHTS.MN
Northern Lights.mn supports artists in the creation and presentation of art in the public sphere, focusing on innovative uses of technology to imagine new interactions between audience, artwork and place and to explore expanded possibilities for civic engagement. Learn more at northern.lights.mn
Moira Villiard is a self-taught, dynamic visual artist, Fond du Lac Band of Ojibwe direct descendent, and current Minnesota-based community organizer.
Additional artist credits: Sound effects and audio production by JayGee of DanSan Creatives. Hand drum and vocals by Lyz Jaakola. Projection and process mentoring by Jonathan Thunder.
Madweyaashkaa is presented as part of Bring Her Home: Sacred Womxn of Resistance, an annual exhibition at All My Relations Arts gallery that invites Indigenous artists to reflect on the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
This project is a partnership with All My Relations Arts, a program of Native American Community Development Institute (NACDI), Northern Lights.mn, Mississippi Park Connection and Mississippi National River and Recreation Area and is supported through a grant from the St. Anthony Falls Heritage Board.