'79 Uranium Mill Tailings Spill Remembered With Prayer Walk - New Orleans Museum Display Of Native American Art To Open July 24th
By Kathy Helms
WINDOW ROCK – The Multicultural Alliance For A Safe Environment and residents of Red Water Pond Road will gather July 16 to host a prayer walk on state Highway 566 in remembrance of communities affected by the July 16, 1979, Churchrock uranium mill tailings spill.
Invited speakers include New Mexico Sen. Lynda Lovejoy, Navajo Nation Council Speaker Lawrence T. Morgan and Resources Committee Chairman George Arthur, who sponsored the Dine Natural Resources Protection Act of 2005 to ban uranium mining and processing within Navajo Indian Country.
Statements of solidarity by representatives of MASE core groups such as Eastern Navajo Dine Against Uranium Mining and Bluewater Valley Downstream Alliance also are on the agenda to commemorate the 31st anniversary of the spill.
An opening prayer at 7 a.m. will kick off the event at the residence of Teddy Nez, 29E Red Water Pond Road, next to the Northeast Churchrock Mine. Participants will begin the walk at 7:30 a.m., and arrive at the south end of the UNC uranium mill tailings impoundment around 9 a.m., where there will be prayers for health and remarks from community members.
Participants then can walk or take a shuttle van back to the Nez residence, where a luncheon is scheduled at noon, along with a reading of the proclamation reaffirming the Navajo Nation’s uranium mining ban, signed last July 16 by President Joe Shirley Jr.
The 1979 spill occurred when an earthen tailings dam at the UNC mill failed, sending 1,100 tons of radioactive mill waste and an estimated 95 million gallons of mine process effluent down Pipeline Arroyo and into the north fork of the Puerco River.
The spill ranks second only to the 1986 Chernobyl reactor meltdown in the amount of radiation released.
July 16 also is a historic day in New Mexico because it was the day in 1945 when the first atomic bomb was detonated at the Trinity Test Site at Alamogordo, N.M.
To mark the event, the Tularosa Basin Downwinders Consortium and Las Mujeres Hablan will hold a statewide gathering in Tularosa in support and remembrance of those who were exposed to the radiation. A candlelight vigil is scheduled 8-10 p.m., in Tularosa for those who have lost loved ones to cancer or who are cancer survivors.
On July 17, the Consortium and Las Mujeres Hablan will hold an all day community gathering, beginning at 9 a.m., at the Tularosa Community Center.
Participants will have the opportunity to share their memories of the Trinity test and also to learn about the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act amendments proposed by U.S. Sen. Tom Udall and a bipartisan group of congressmen. The amendments would cover New Mexico downwinders exposed to radiation from the Trinity Test Site.
Information: Churchrock walk, Teddy Nez, (505) 879-2910; Tularosa vigil, Tina Cordova, (505) 897-6838
ANCESTORS AND DESCENDANTS:
Ancient Southwestern America at the Dawn of the 20th Century on display at NOMA from July 24 - October 24
A little known American Indian archive will be unveiled at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) from July 24 until October 24, 2010. Ancestors and Descendants: Ancient Southwestern America at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century will be the first comprehensive exhibition of nineteenth century photography, southwestern artifacts and archival research from the George Hubbard Pepper Native American Archive at Tulane University.
In collaboration with Tulane’s Middle American Research Institute (MARI) and Latin American Library (LAL), the exhibition offers a special glimpse of the Tulane archive featuring over 150 objects from Pepper’s personal Native American art collection as well as over 140 photographic images Pepper, a museum ethnologist and scholar, used as visual complements to his lectures.
Many of the images and the objects in Ancestors and Descendents, including textiles, pottery, baskets, and other Pueblo and Navajo paraphernalia, have never been published or seen by the general public since 1924.
“There has never been an opportunity to bring together this many items from the Pepper archive,” said Paul Tarver, curator of Ancestors and Descendants. “Even in his lifetime, Pepper could only display a handful of objects with a few dozen images he projected through a magic lantern. This is the first time the breadth of the archive has been researched and displayed.”
The objects and images selected for the NOMA exhibition document the relationship between American Indians and the scientists, photographers and tourists who traveled to New Mexico and Arizona at the turn of the twentieth century. MARI and LAL archives include Pepper’s original excavation journals, personal diaries, sketch books, lectures and photographs that illustrate everyday interactions between Pepper and his subjects.
The exhibition will utilize excerpts from these materials and bring the time period to life through Pepper’s words.
The exhibition at NOMA will display the wide variety of art forms Pepper collected from the Southwest as well as drawings and original handwritten journals from his Bonito excavation. Ancestors and Descendents presents a rare opportunity to see a collection that was put together over one hundred years ago by a museum ethnologist and early collector and scholar of Native American art.
Ancestors and Descendents: Ancient Southwestern America at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century is curated by Paul J. Tarver NOMA’s Curator of Pre-Columbian and Native American Art and co-curated by Cristin J. Nunez. The exhibition is generously funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, and the Cudd Foundation.
Wednesdays are FREE for all Museum visitors. Louisiana residents with valid photo identification: Adults, $8; Seniors (65 and up), $7; Children 3-17, $4; Children under 3, free. Out-of-state visitors: Adults, $10; Seniors (65 and up), $9; Children 3-17, $5; Children under 3, free. Free Wednesdays and discounted admission for Louisiana residents is made possible through the generosity of The Helis Foundation.
About NOMA And The Besthoff Sculpture Garden
The New Orleans Museum of Art, founded in 1910 by Isaac Delgado, houses more than 30,000 art objects encompassing 4,000 years of world art. Works from the permanent collection, along with continuously changing temporary exhibitions, are on view in the Museum’s 46 galleries Wednesdays from noon to 8 p.m. and Thursdays to Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Admission to the adjacent Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden, featuring work by 61 artists, is always free. The Sculpture Garden is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. except for Wednesdays, when it’s open until dusk.
The New Orleans Museum of Art and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden are fully accessible to handicapped visitors and wheelchairs are available from the front desk.
For More Information:
Call (504) 658-4100 or visit http://www.noma.org/.
Grace WilsonDirector of Communications & MarketingNew Orleans Museum of Art
Desk: (504) 658-4106Cell: (504) 729-0887Fax: (504) 658-4199
Press Room: http://www.noma.org/pressroom/index.html
TO SUBMIT an ARTICLE, OPINION PIECE, COMMENTS to the Native Unity Digest, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
NATIVE UNITY - A place for Native American Peoples to solidify their tribes to make a positive impact on the cultural, social, economic and political fabric of American society and a place for non-Natives to better understand the ways of the American Indian.
Native Unity Digest stories are now appearing on the BeforeIt'sNews.com site under the Native American News category. Check them out!!!!
News Blog - American Indian Report - AIR BLOG
THE BUFFALO POST - Missoulian Montana's Native News Blog about Native People And The World We Live In.
Check Out NATIVE PRIDE- It's a great site!
NATIVE AMERICA, DISCOVERED AND CONQUERED
PATHOLOGY.ORG - Up-to-date informmational database on general health and disease information, medical schools and medical resources.
FOR ANNIE'S NATIVE CELEBRITY NEWS - go to http://www.nativecelebs.com/
SUPPORTING NATIVE AMERICAN/FIRST PEOPLE - ARTISTS, FILM MAKERS, ENTERTAINERS, ETC.