Gray Area and Skawennati
“They Sustain Us” is a hybrid performative work bridging traditional First Nations food and dress culture across borders.
Gray Area is commissioning artist Skawennati to create “They Sustain Us,” a hybrid performative work that will tell the traditional story of The Three Sisters, the ancient Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) representation of the traditional agricultural staples: corn, beans, and squash. These food sources exist in Indigenous cultures around the Americas, uniting disparate and diverse peoples. The project will help to bridge traditional First Nations food and dress culture across borders. “They Sustain Us” will feature digital avatars and live actors interacting with each other and the audience and include physical and virtual costume designs, sets, performances, and an exhibition. The final project will take place both in-person at Gray Area and as a virtual performance in Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace — an online world created in Second Life by the artist and other collaborators, including the Initiative for Indigenous Futures.