THE UNCOMPAHGRE – LOCAL LANGUAGE
January 3 - February 29
The Uncompahgre people are a tribal band/community from the Ute Indian Tribe that reside on the Uintah & Ouray Indian Reservation in Northeastern Utah. Before the tribe was created, Ute people were eleven communal bands stretched across the Western Slope of the Colorado Rockies. Utes lived a life of movement and oneness with nature, summering in the high mountains and spending winters in the low valleys. Due to ongoing wars and westward expansion, the Uncompahgre were relocated by military force to the Utah Indian Reservation hundreds of miles from their original homeland, in the hopes that the Uncompahgre would assimilate to farming and give up their hunter-gatherer lifestyle. During these times the people did what they could to survive and hold on to their cultural and spiritual practices.
The photographic archives in this exhibition are of the Uncompahgre people after their forced removal to the Utah Indian Reservation. They were collected by the artist from archival albums from his grandparents and represent his Ute Indian and Uncompahgre heritage.
Keith Secola’s recent body of work involves the reinsertion of the American Indian image onto collaged and deconstructed book covers of American colonial history, creating a new surface for printing and painting. The use of archival photography on the textbooks allows Secola to create a layer between the past and present and to form new narratives that question Native identity through the fusion of image, text, and memory.
Artist Name: Keith Secola
About Artist: Keith Secola grew up in the Southwest US and belongs to the Ute Indian tribe and Bois Forte Band Ojibwa. He graduated from the California College of the Arts with an MFA in 2018 with a focus on printmaking. Secola’s earliest influences come from his father, a musician whose travels exposed him to contemporary Native arts at a young age and influenced a life in the creative arts. Exploring balance between contemporary and traditional themes, his artwork merges printmaking, archival photography, illustrations, and murals sourced from Native American life and skateboard culture. Each piece transmits indigenous memories, identity, and narratives. Keith Secola lives and works in Oakland, California.