On Saturday, Aug. 6, gallupARTS is hosting “Exposé: A Show for Economic Justice,” a special limited-run show that tackles issues of exploitation in the Native arts market with work of five Diné visual and literary artists.
This exhibit is located at 204 E. Aztec Ave. in Gallup. The opening reception is from 5-7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6. It is open to the public from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Aug. 9-14 and then by appointment from Aug. 15-Sept. 3.
Artists in “Exposé” include: Armond Antonio, Jerry Brown, Manny Loley, Tasha N, and Jay Smiley.
Armond Antonio is a Diné artist from Gallup that utilizes pencil, acrylic, oil, watercolor, mixed media, and block printing in his art.
“Antonio is creating a mixed media piece and he took an image from the southwest Indian foundation catalogs,” said Rose Eason, gallupARTS executive director. “They’re based at Gallup, and they sell across the world .”
Antonio regularly participates in the Sovereign Santa Fe exhibition, and has exhibited his work across the Southwest Add him on Instagram @antonio_studioarts.
Jerry Brown is a contemporary Diné painter from Mariano Lake.
“I have heard Jerry talk about how he feels like he’s had to really carve his own path within Gallup because he hasn’t always been accepted with open arms,” Eason said.
Brown graduated from the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe and creates abstract pieces influenced by his culture and lifestyle.
Find him on Instagram @jerrybrownart.
Loley is a current student at the University of Denver studying to become a Doctor of Philosophy in English and literary arts.
Loley, like Brown, also attended the Institute of American Indian where he earned an M.F.A. in fiction.
His work has been featured in the Santa Fe Literary Review, Broadsided Press, Pleaides Magazine, the Massachusetts Review and The Yellow Medicine Review.
Lowley is currently writing a book titled “They Collect Rain in Their Palms,” and has been nominated for Pushcart Prizes three times.
Tasha N, is a Diné artist, photographer and graphic designer inspired by the culture, and her days as a kid in the Gallup area.
“Tasha is creating a piece where she went around and took photos of all of the signs from Gallup that say something to the effect of handmade native arts or you know, by Native-made art,” Eason said. “She’s doing a collage and then adding some kind of imagery into it that talks about how Gallup has been built by the hands of native people, but they’re not the ones who have always benefited or benefitted the most from their own work and output.”
Smiley is a Diné artist from Tuba City, Arizona, who makes abstract, and street-influenced paintings.
Smiley grew up on Diné tradition and was brought up to value Ké which values qualities such as solidarity, such as love, compassion, friendliness, generosity, and peacefulness.
Smiley is part of “Medicine Paint Dream Warriors” an art collective and also has many murals located throughout the Southwest from Page, Arizona’s Lower Antelope Canyon to a room at Nativo Lodge in Albuquerque. Follow his Instagram @jaysmileylive.
“I think my favorite part is just how excited the artists got for this opportunity,” Eason said. “They’ve just kind of taken the whole concept and run with it and how I think this is the highest and best purpose of gallop arts to be able to support artists, expressing themselves and, creating a safe space for them to speak their truth.”
For more information about gallupARTS and ART123 Gallery, visit galluparts.org.