Opening January 12 at UVic Legacy Gallery Downtown, the exhibition Body Language: Reawakening Cultural Tattooing of the Northwest is a deep dive into the reclamation of Indigenous tattooing in the Pacific Northwest.
Alongside historical photos and ephemera, Body Language features five contemporary artists and cultural tattoo practitioners, whose art practices explore designs on skin and their relationship to traditional clothing, rock art, jewellery, basketry and weaving to provide healing, protection and a deep sense of cultural knowledge and belonging.
Exhibition curator and Nlaka’pamux tattoo artist Dion Kaszas says, “The revival of our tattooing affirms our identity, sends messages of empowerment and stitches together our history with our contemporary existence. Our tattoos are a permanent reminder that we belong to something bigger than ourselves.”
On January 13, there will be an online discussion with three of the artists from Body Language: Dion Kaszas (Nlaka’pamux), Nahaan (Tlingit) and Nakkita Trimble (Nisga’a).
Also opening in January at the Legacy Gallery is Derrumbeat: The Beat of Collapse, an interactive sonic collage which combines images and sounds of decomposing buildings in Havana, Cuba. This collaborative project with UVic anthropologist Alexandrine Boudreault-Fournier and her colleagues from Cuba, DJ Jigüe and photographer Ained Cala, invites visitors to mix the beats of collapse as they engage with music and images.
Derrumbeat: The Beat of Collapse opens January 15. Both exhibitions runs until April 9.
More about UVic Legacy Galleries can be found at uvic.ca/legacygalleries/index.php