Between Descendants and Ancestors: Indigenous Stories for a Future is a two-part series of contemporary short films and animation by Indigenous artists residing on Turtle Island. The stories in this series ponder Native time and Indigenous history in relation to land, settler colonialism, and futurity. While some of these films could be categorized as “science fiction” or even “mythology,” the films more closely reflect a concept of “Indigenous documentary” and complex worldviews of spiraling time, time travel, multiverses, and alternative histories. They document a continuum of ancestral wisdom, ancient time, cultural values, and living knowledge. The results are a matrix of Indigenous teachings that simultaneously reach into the past and the future while offering guidance for a future of Native sovereignty, resilience, and survival.
Featured artists in the series’ first installment include T. J. Cuthand, Joseph Erb, Danis Goulet, Lisa Jackson, and Elizabeth LaPenseé. Curated by John Jota Leaños, Professor of Film & Digital Media at UC Santa Cruz, the series will be continuously looped and available for viewing in the IAS galleries’ dedicated screening room during regular opening hours.
Films in the series:
Wakening (8:51), dir. Danis Goulet, 2013
Reclamation (13:34), dir. TJ Cuthand, 2018
The Path Without End (5:56), dir. Elizabeth LaPensée, 2011
Uktena and Thunder (8:48), dir. Joseph Erb, 2017
The Visit (3:48), dir. Lisa Jackson, 2009