My friend Jaque Fragua completed his mural in Indian Alley… it is in your face and I love it! I met Jaque at an Occupy event and we later traded some art. I’m now the proud owner of his “You’re All Illegal piece”. Jaque is passionate and can express his aims with his mural far better than I could, so check out what he has to say and check out honorthetreaties.org for more info on the project.-Shepard
::: JAQUE FRAGUA “DECOLONIZE AND KEEP CALM” ::: from Landon taylor on Vimeo.
I have engaged a whole slew of questions and in some cases interrogation about what Honor The Treaties is and about what “decolonize” means to me. First off, treaties among the 565 federally recognized tribes are in violation on a daily basis, whether in regards to water rights, land trust, or basic health care. Instead of creating boundaries or an institution to work from within, I see Honor The Treaties as an instrument to educate the public on what governments and tribes have agreed upon in the past, in order to live in peace among one another in this land. But more importantly, beyond the education of history and the present-moment plight of Native sovereignty, I see Honor The Treaties as a way to empower the individual as well as communities in their efforts to reclaim the peace that was never honored, and to attain that peace in a way that’s self-reliant, self-sufficient, non-violent, and people powered. It’s bigger than the man-made pacts called treaties. Personally, I see these contracts as garbage, treated as such long before whatever colonizing government forced indigenous leaders to sign them.
To me, decolonization means to remove all of the oppressive indoctrination and cultural conditioning created by the colonizing government, and perpetuated by indigenous and non-indigenous people. Thus, I see Honor The Treaties as a way to bring to light the overall struggle for tribal sovereignty, self-determination, and independence. This is what directly inspires the “DECOLONIZE AND KEEP CALM” mural and the very essence of much my work on the streets and off. It’s got to be active and it’s got to be dynamic. We are still here, AND we are moving FORWARD.