Since arts organizations began emphasizing equity, diversity, and inclusion, commendable efforts have emerged, resulting in tangible changes, often at the institutional level. These efforts have led to the opening of doors, the dismantling of barriers, and the establishment of genuinely welcoming environments that offer opportunities to ethnic minorities, women, Black artists, and neglected communities, as well as authentic stories about nations.
However, a critical question remains: how prepared are these art organizations to fully commit to advancing equity and implementing actions that speak louder than land acknowledgement words? Are measures being taken on national and international levels to move such efforts forward and prevent them from stagnating in the past? Is developing an action plan enough, or is more concrete action required?
Recent years witnessed a growing recognition of indigenous contemporary art and its pivotal role in shaping an inclusive cultural landscape. Indigenous artists worldwide are crafting powerful and thought-provoking works that challenge stereotypes, redefine cultural narratives and shed light on the intricate challenges of indigenous communities. As museums endeavor to reflect the diverse spectrum of human experiences, including contemporary indigenous art within their collections is no longer merely a necessity, but a recognition and a celebration of cultural richness and boundless creativity.
This fall, Tufts University Art Galleries (TUAG) are presenting two exhibitions centered on indigenous art. “Véxoa: We Know” at Tufts University Art Galleries (TUAG), in Medford, Massachusetts and “Elizabeth James-Perry: Double Arrows” at the SMFA at Tufts campus in Boston’s Fenway.