Saturday, June 15, 2024

KALICO exhibit showcases Indigenous photos

| February 3, 2022 12:00 AM

KALICO Art Center announces its first exhibition of 2022, “Imagining Ourselves: Celebrating Indigenous Culture, Color, and Vibrancy” by artist Haley Rains.

Historically, Native American and Indigenous people have been depicted by non-native photographers as members of a mythical, vanishing race. Early sepia tone and black and white photographs portray them as relics of an unrecoverable past, frozen in time. As a Mvskoke photographer, Rains seeks to locate her subjects in the present by celebrating their vitality, beauty, strength and Indigeneity. She challenges historical misrepresentations by capturing highly saturated photographs of Indigenous people draped in vibrant, colorful regalia as they dance in graceful motion.

Born and raised in Billings, Rains is an enrolled member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma. A photographer for over 14 years, she began her career as a concert photographer at the age of 15. Her portfolio includes bands such as Nine Inch Nails, Buckcherry, Avenged Sevenfold, Puddle of Mudd and many more. After attending film school in Bozeman, Rains went on to work in the film industry. By age of 20, she’d worked on three feature films, starting as a production assistant and advancing to an IMDb-credited second assistant director. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Indigenous and American Indian Studies degree from Haskell Indian Nations University — a former Indian boarding school turned Tribal University in Lawrence, Kansas — and a master’s in Native American studies from the University of California, Davis where she is working on her Ph.D. in Native American studies with an emphasis on visual sovereignty. Rains is also an associate instructor at UC Davis and teaches in the Cinema and Digital Media Department and Native American Studies Department. An opening reception will be held from 5 to 6 p.m. Feb. 5.

KALICO Art Center is located at 149 S. Main St., Kalispell.