For This Land: Inside Elemental
by 2Ro Media, the team of Janet Rogers, and Jackson 2Bears
Curators: Debbie Ebanks Schlums and Adrian Kaghee
June 19, 2020 - August 20, 2020
Durham Art Gallery is pleased to co-present with the Fabulous Festival of Fringe Film, For This Land: Inside Elemental. 2Ro Media, the team of Janet Rogers and Jackson 2Bears, created a work of monumental importance on the territory of the Six Nations of the Grand River.
Originally conceived as a two-channel installation and performance, bringing the viewer into an immersive, ghostly landscape, haunted by memories and spiritual understanding of place; we present this online encounter with the work. Please set aside time to experience the work.
This new, two channel video iteration opens up an opportunity to quietly resonate in the intimacy of an artwork while making the work accessible to audiences beyond the geographical location of the Gallery.
| Image | 2Ro Media (Janet Rogers and Jackson2Bears), For This Land: Inside Elemental, 2020. Adapted Digital Video.
In this work, Rogers and 2Bears convey the deep space-time relationship they bring to the natural geographies on which these built spaces of cultural significance are situated. These spaces are complicated - at once sites of trauma, but also of resilience and artistic productivity.
Their embodied relationship to the built environment reveals new insights into the impact of colonialism on the people and on the land in the territory. For This Land: Inside Elemental, thus performs as both artwork and living archive.
Because of the pandemic, the exhibition is now re-conceived for audiences beyond Durham. For This Land: Inside Elemental can be experienced as an intimate encounter at home, a new way of listening and seeing the work, perhaps opening up a space for even deeper reflection.
“Inside Elemental is an exploration of the internalization of one’s traditional territory, and in general about how our external environments are deeply intertwined with identity, self-understanding and the interiority of personal and collective experience. Everything is inside; everything outside can be accessed and interpreted as performative storytelling under the sign of what Leroy Little Bear called ‘natural laws of interdependence’ when referring to the living archive of land-based narratives. With this project we offer sky, sunlight, moonlight, wind and stars from the Six Nations of the Grand River territory, bringing these stories from the land into the gallery in the form of an immersive multi-digital installation.”
– Janet Rogers and Jackson 2Bears
The Festival and Gallery are located in Durham, West Grey, on the traditional territory of the Saugeen Ojibway Nation. In recognition of the Elders who were sent from Saugeen to the Mush Hole, the Fabulous Festival of Fringe Film has commissioned a creative response to For This Land: Inside Elemental from Sharon Isaac, filmmaker and community artist from Saugeen First Nation. Coming soon to the Durham Art Gallery’s exhibition webpage will be a written text shedding light on the reverberations of memory across internal and external territories and beyond the architecture of a place.
Durham Art Gallery and the Fabulous Festival of Fringe Film would like to thank the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council for the generous support of this exhibition.