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Rising to Indigenous Reparations

October 20, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm


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In this conversation, we’ll talk about how to move from nominal indigenous reparations, like land acknowledgements, into deeper partnership with native siblings. We’ll talk about how power and colonization still manifests in many of the ways religious communities interact with indigenous communities, and in our own theologies. We’ll also talk about the role art can play in helping us to imagine new futures that foster indigenous thriving, and tell more accurate stories about our native siblings’ past, present and future.

Jacqui Lewis will be joined in this conversation by Kali Spitzer and Jim Bear Jacobs. This conversation is part of the Freedom Rising Salons, a year-long conversation series that features thought leaders, organizers, artists and modern prophets reflecting on crucial justice issues, and what we all can do to rise and meet them.

Kali Spitzer (she/her)
“Indigenous femme queer photographer Kali Spitzer ignites the spirit of our current unbound human experience with all the complex histories we exist in, passed down through the trauma inflicted/received by our ancestors. Kali’s photographs are intimate and unapologetic and make room for growth and forgiveness while creating a space where we may share the vulnerable and broken parts of our stories which are often overlooked, or not easy to digest for ourselves or society.” Ginger Dunnill, Creator and Producer of Broken Boxes Podcast (which features interviews with indigenous and other engaged artists).

Kali Spitzer is Kaska Dena from Daylu (Lower Post, British Columbia) on her father’s side and Jewish from Transylvania, Romania on her mother’s side. She is from the Yukon and grew up on the West Coast of British Columbia in so called canada, on the traditional territories of the Lək̓ʷəŋən Peoples. She is a multi disciplinary artist who predominantly works with film photography. Kali studied photography at the Santa Fe Community College and the Institute of American Indian Arts. Under the mentorship of Will Wilson, Kali explored alternative practices to photography. She has worked with film in 35 mm, 120 and large format, as well as wet plate collodion process using an 8-by-10 camera. Her work includes portraits, figure studies, and photographs of her people, ceremonies, and culture. Kali is committed to creating space for queer and trans people, and BIPOC to feel seen and accurately represented in the ways they choose.

Kali focuses on cultural revitalization through her art, whether in the medium of photography, ceramics, beading, tanning hides or hunting. She views all of these practices as art and as part of an exploration of self. At the age of 20, Kali moved back north to spend time with her Elders, learning and practicing traditional ways of life and art. Throughout Kali’s career she has documented these practices with a sense of urgency, highlighting their vital cultural significance.

Kali’s work has been internationally exhibited and recognized. Notably, she has received a Reveal Indigenous Art Award from Hnatyshyn Foundation (2017), her work was part of National Geographic’s Women: a Century of Change at the National Geographic Museum (2020), and most recently her work can be found at the Heard Museum exhibition, Larger than Memory: Contemporary Art From Indigenous North America (2020).

Kali recognizes the trust and vulnerability required by her subjects to be photographed in such intimate ways and wishes to extend gratitude to all those who have been part of her artistic process.

Jim Bear Jacobs
Jim Bear Jacobs was born in St. Paul, he is a member of the Stockbridge-Munsee Mohican Nation, an American Indian tribe located in central Wisconsin. He has degrees in Pastoral Studies and Christian Theology and has served various churches as youth minister, adult Christian educator, and director of Men’s Ministries. Presently he is parish associate at Church of All Nations Presbyterian Church. He is a cultural facilitator in the Twin Cities and works to raise the public’s awareness of American Indian causes and injustices. He is the Director of Community Engagement and Racial Justice for the Minnesota Council of Churches. Additionally he is the creator and director of “Healing Minnesota Stories,” a program of the Minnesota Council of Churches dedicated to ensuring that the Native American voice is heard in areas where it has long been ignored.

This conversation is made possible in part through sponsorship by The Middle Project.

The Middle Project prepares ethical leaders for a more just society. It is an institute that brings together youth, young adults and adults from many fields and faith traditions.

The Middle Project unites progressive leaders who are ready for a revolutionary and prophetic way of using power and resources to act locally and think globally to heal the human family. The Middle Project takes its strength and approach from the progressive faith traditions that have played a major role in America’s greatest democratic achievements: the abolition of slavery, civil rights, universal suffrage, and the anti-war movement. www.middleproject.org


October 20, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
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50 E 7th Street
50 East 7th Street
New York, NY 10003 United States
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