Artist Talk: Flying Blue Buffalo Installation

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Santa Fe artist Armond Lara and his collaborator Joseph Riggs discuss the story behind the Flying Blue Buffalo installation on Saturday, August 18, 2-3 pm. The monumental art installation, comprising 77 winged buffalo sculptures, tells the centuries-long story of enslaved Native American children. Inspired by his own family history, Lara dreamed up the winged buffalo as a new symbol of Native survival and resilience.

Learn more about this exhibition.

Events

Preview with guest speaker Estevan Rael-Gálvez:
Thursday, August 16, 5:30-6:30 pm | RSVP on Facebook.

Opening Reception: Friday, August 17, 5-7 pm | RSVP on Facebook.
Artist Talk: Saturday, August 18, 2-3 pm | RSVP on Facebook.
Closing Reception: Saturday, November 17, 5-7 pm | RSVP on Facebook.

Meet Dr. Estevan Rael-Gálvez.

Dr. Estevan Rael-Galvez- Flying Blue Buffalo Project- Form and Concept Gallery- Santa Fe New Mexico

Dr. Estevan Rael-Gálvez of Santa Fe will speak at a free preview of Armond Lara’s Flying Blue Buffalo installation on Thursday, August 16 at 5:30 pm. With ancestral connections to both Hispanic and Indigenous communities, Dr. Rael-Gálvez was raised working on a farm and ranch stewarded by his family for generations in Costilla, New Mexico. Learn how he found his way to academia in Joseph A. Baca’s excellent article “The Accidental Historian” in the Weekly Alibi. Here’s an excerpt:

The son of a borreguero (sheep herder) in northern Taos County, Estevan Rael-Gálvez says he constantly lost his flock. Life on the farm wasn’t for him. So with his mother’s encouragement, he walked away from his family’s generations-old trade of sheep and farming in Costilla and Questa to answer his calling—academia, and ultimately a much larger world where culture, art and politics converge.

Dr. Rael-Gálvez holds a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, where he completed an award-winning dissertation, “Identifying Captivity and Capturing Identity: Narratives of American Indian Slavery.” He is currently working on the manuscript The Silence of Slavery.

Formerly the State Historian of New Mexico, Executive Director of the National Hispanic Cultural Center, and Senior Vice President at the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Dr. Rael-Gálvez currently is a writer and the founding principal of Creative Strategies 360°, a consulting firm which supports transformative work within communities and organizations, including his present project, an initiative on “Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation.”

Learn more about this event.
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Support Armond Lara’s Kickstarter!

Armond Lara- Flying Blue Buffalo Kickstarter- Watch the Video- Form and Concept Gallery
Armond Lara at form & concept. Click the image to watch the Kickstarter video.

“A herd of anything has much more impact than one.” -Armond Lara

form & concept presents a Kickstarter campaign, anchored by an open house and panel discussion event, in support of Armond Lara’s Flying Blue Buffalo Project.

The fundraiser will go towards the creation of a monumental installation of cast resin Flying Blue Buffalo sculptures in the gallery’s atrium, based on a series of wood carvings by Lara. Inspired by the Santa Fe artist’s family history, this project tells the centuries-long story of enslaved Native American children. It’s a topic that hit the front page of the New York Times this weekend, in an article by Simon Romero. Here’s an excerpt:

Lenny Trujillo made a startling discovery when he began researching his descent from one of New Mexico’s pioneering Hispanic families: One of his ancestors was a slave.

“I didn’t know about New Mexico’s slave trade, so I was just stunned,” said Mr. Trujillo, 66, a retired postal worker who lives in Los Angeles. “Then I discovered how slavery was a defining feature of my family’s history.”

Mr. Trujillo is one of many Latinos who are finding ancestral connections to a flourishing slave trade on the blood-soaked frontier now known as the American Southwest. Their captive forebears were Native Americans — slaves frequently known as Genízaros (pronounced heh-NEE-sah-ros) who were sold to Hispanic families when the region was under Spanish control from the 16th to 19th centuries. Many Indian slaves remained in bondage when Mexico and later the United States governed New Mexico.

The revelations have prompted some painful personal reckonings over identity and heritage. But they have also fueled a larger, politically charged debate on what it means to be Hispanic and Native American.

Lara’s studies of this little-told history lead to the conception of the Flying Blue Buffalo, a new symbol of Indigenous survival and resilience. The Flying Blue Buffalo Project Kickstarter campaign launched on January 26 and runs through February 28. Mock-ups of the buffalo sculptures will appear at a February 17 open house event, and Lara will convene a panel of history experts to discuss the project and its themes. The installation will debut in form & concept’s atrium on August 17, 2018, and run through November 2018.

Click here to learn more & contribute.

Armond Lara- Flying Blue Buffalo Project- Digital Rendering of Art Installation- Form and Concept Gallery
Digital rendering of Flying Blue Buffalo art installation, 3D Proven Systems.
Armond Lara- Flying Blue Buffalo Print- Kickstarter Reward- Form and Concept Gallery
Limited edition Flying Blue Buffalo print.
Armond Lara- Flying Blue Buffalo Wood Carving- Santa Fe New Mexico- Form and Concept Gallery
One of Armond’s original Flying Blue Buffalo carvings.
Armond Lara- Flying Blue Buffalo Project- Form and Concept Gallery- Santa Fe New Mexico
Digital rendering of cast resin buffalo.

Click here to browse Armond Lara’s artwork.