Sovereignty and Climate Change have an integral relationship for Indigenous Peoples. The importance of tribal sovereignty and self-determination, culture and cultural identity are evermore precedent in today's younger generation so I chose to do this performance at the community college for the Native Youth club.
I tied black tape around empty plastic bottles to a rope to represent the oil industry that is driving into our lands and into our water resources, depleting people from having fresh water. The oil industry is just one of many factors taking away at our resources on our Indigenous Lands. I wanted to show the audience that the empty plastic bottles are a representation of how precious these bottles really do mean to us because water is life.
I took the rope and made a circle and placed two filled jugs of water and placed them in the center of the circle. I took one end of the rope and began to tie myself up with it and walked around the room while walking and making each step uncomfortable because the sound of plastic crushing to the ear is not pleasant. At the front of the staged, I laid out three dull scissors for the audience to come up and cut me free. After I was freed I then began to fill the empty jugs with water.
In the end, it takes a community effort to collectively build a network and work for water rights and fight for the protection of water resources.
We may not remain conscious of how valuable this resource is essential to us until it's gone or until it is removed from our shoulders.
Indigenous Rain Performance
El Museo Cultural Center
Santa Fe, New Mexico