Exhibition dates and artist talk
April 24 - May 7 at The Fralin Museum of Art
April 28 - May 7 at outdoor locations across Grounds
April 28, 3pm EST, artist talk with Jaime Black-Morsette in conversation with UVA professor Kasey Jernigan. Join on zoom at this link.
The REDress Project is an installation art project created by Métis artist Jaime Black-Morsette to seek justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and Two Spirit people (MMIWG2S).
The installation consists of hundreds of red dresses suspended in public spaces to mark the absence and evoke the presence of Indigenous women, girls, and two spirit people who have gone missing or been murdered.
Indigenous women face higher rates of violence than any other cultural group in Canada and the United States. Indigenous families and communities have been advocating for generations to make changes to the colonial system that often treat the perpetrators of this violence with impunity.
The REDress Project works to create space for families of the missing and murdered and their supporters to tell their stories and to find solidarity in the struggle to protect the rights of Indigenous women and girls. The project provides a space to hear from frontline community workers, Indigenous women academics, elders and knowledge keepers on how we can work together as a community to bring justice to MMIWG2S and their families.
Founded in 2009, The REDress Project was first exhibited at the University of Winnipeg Campus in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with over one hundred dresses displayed across campus. Over the past ten years The REDress Project has travelled to over 50 locations across Canada and internationally. The REDress Project has been shown at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Ontario, at the National Museum of The American Indian in Washington, DC and is on permanent display at The Canada Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Jaime Black-Morsette is a Métis visual artist, living and working on their ancestral homeland in the Red River valley of Manitoba, Canada. Their art practice engages in themes of memory, identity, place and resistance and is grounded in an understanding of the body and the land as sources of cultural and spiritual knowledge.
-- Photos by Jaime Black-Morsette
At UVA, red dresses are suspended at outdoor locations along McCormick Road, in Arts Grounds, and around The Fralin Museum of Art. There is also an indoor installation upstairs in The Fralin.
The exhibition is organized by the Native and Indigenous Relations Community in partnership with The Fralin Museum of Art, and supported by the Dean's Fund for the Democracy Initiative.
The REDress installation contains sensitive content that could evoke a strong emotional reaction.Jaime Black-Morsette’s REDress Project brings attention to the issue of MMIWG2S in a powerful and necessary way. The exhibit’s presence at the University of Virginia has the potential to contextualize the ways that gender and sexual violence shaped the institutions of Indigenous genocide and slavery. The vivid and arresting red dresses interrupt the fiction of UVA’s pastoral landscapes in ways that potentially bring attention to the stories of enslaved women and girls who appear on the plaques at the Memorial to Enslaved Laborers on grounds. Ongoing discussions and interpretations of Black-Morsette’s exhibit here at UVA will continue to give us new vocabulary for articulating the ways that the violence of slavery and genocide are intertwined.
-- Black & Indigenous Feminist Futures Institute, UVA
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