Artists Nube F. Cruz and Jean Melesaine present a gallery of photography, acrylic painted walls, wheat paste, stencils, and mixed media to create a street art-esque prayer of identity based on themes of indigenous queer identity from the “hood”. The terms “ Jot@, Studs, Faafaines, and Homothugs to the 2nd Spirit” will be created through active participation of stories from community queers, youth and artists stories and experience combining community based art through art. What is indigenous/native identity? What is “hood”? What are our communities’ stories? Sexuality and indigenous identity contemporarily in some communities have been of conflict. Colonization, segregation and deportation are things that have been and still affect communities of color. Growing up as a Xican@ Indigena of Yaqui, Mayo, and Mescaler@ Apache Identity Madeline Medina Elenes says “Being here and able to be me is already an act of revolution”. The exploration of these acts and stories is an act or resistance.
This project is made possible thanks to the support of Galeria de la Raza’s GINAA Program (Grant Writing for Indigenous and Native American Artists), a small grants and capacity-building project funded by the San Francisco Arts Commission and a commissioning grant from the Creating Queer Community Program of the Queer Cultural Center.
Nube F. Cruz is a muralist, writer and organizer by the way of Southern California. He is a Xican@-Indigena Self identified (chican@ indigenous/native) of Mixtec and Yaqui Descent, a Punk Rocker from East Los and So Cal, a cheesy romantic, a very shy person at moments (specially when it comes to boys), and a community organizer. He has constantly worked with indigenous communities from Latin America and the U.S bridging Native identities and solidarity through activism and art negating the separatism caused by borders. Believing in having no limits, but pure vision.He firmly believes that “when I paint, I pray, and my ancestors are with me”, a belief of art as a form of healing. He hopes to keep on working and making art accessible to communities of color and low-income communities, and hopes to one day work with queer youth of color. His work can be seen in a several murals across the east bay, and writing can be seen in the Queer Xican@ Joto Anthology.
Jean Melesaine is a queer Oceanic(Samoan,Tongan,Maori,Fijian) writer/photographer. Her father is from the village of Solani Falealili and her mother is from the village of Moamoa. Born and raised in the Bay Area from East Side San Jose to Hunters Point, San Francisco to the East Bay. A Silicon Valley DeBugger for life and a founding member of “One Love Oceania” a queer pacific islander womyns group who also supports incarcerated Pacific Islander women as well.