Blood Is the New Black
An installation by Jason Lujan
January 24 – March 14, 2007
Toward a Liberated Condition (detail),
2007, inkjet on card
I actively work as an artist to document Native American experiences within global environments. Using all my senses to log every bit of data available, I seek connections between Native cultures and the world at large. In doing so, I create new associations and recode meanings to represent a hybridized Indian identity within contemporary society. I constantly hear about Indians existing “between two worlds,” to which my response is, “Why stop at two? Why not three? Why not ten?”
Those quick Internet news blurbs, collaged against each other and juxtaposed alongside unrelated advertisements and animated images, trigger in me a conceptual reorientation. I am curious about the fact that beings and things exist in the world in ways other than those identified by external traditions and internal voluntary constraints.
The title of this exhibition, for example, suggests multiple meanings derived from a clichéd phrase. I have a feeling that the word “blood” carries a different meaning for the average American than for the average American Indian. This doesn’t indicate that one meaning is superior to the other or that the difference between the two is necessarily vast, just that there are experiences, both personal and cultural, whereby different results are reached. It’s important for me to try to access as many of these results as possible.
The lecture is supported by the Jeanne Scribner Cashin Endowment for Fine Arts.