Skip to main content

Native Cinema Showcase at the Santa Fe Indian Market: imagineNATIVE and The 1491s

  • Author:
  • Updated:

The Native Cinema Showcase runs from August 13-19 in Santa Fe, NM, concurrent with the flurry of arts activity known as Santa Fe Indian Market week, which culminates in the massive Santa Fe Indian Market on August 18 and 19.

The Showcase features some of today's best and most interesting Native filmmaking; auteurs include the young and the old, and productions range from just a few minutes to feature-length works.

You may not be able to attend the screenings in Santa Fe, but here at we're bringing you some flavor of what you might see; the Native Cinema Showcase in miniature. Each day, we're showing trailers from the films on offer and, in some cases, the complete clips.

Below are today's offerings, with some information provided by the Native Cinema Showcase. Pop some popcorn, turn off all cell phones, sit back and enjoy!

Saturday, August 18: imagineNATIVE Presents

Since 2007 the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival has commissioned new work from Canadian Aboriginal artists. This program features ten of these commissions, some by Canada's leading media makers and others by emerging filmmakers. This program includes the project's first sound art commission, and a collaboration of indigenous youth from different continents. The festival features works by world indigenous artists and takes place next on October 17-21, 2012, in Toronto.

"Moss Origins" (Canada, 2011, 8 min.)

Director: Jennifer Dysart (Cree/German/Canadian). A woman encounters messages in the moss—messages that bridge the gap between the city and the forest.

"eu·tha·na·sia" (Canada, 2008, 6 min.)

Director: Jani Lauzon (Métis). An Aboriginal girl leaves her home to attend residential school.

"Savage" (Canada, 2009, 6 min.)

Director: Lisa Jackson (Ojibwe). An inventive take on the trauma of boarding school for Native people.

"Seven Seconds" (Canada, 2010, 13 min.)


Director: Michael Greyeyes (Cree). A dancer faces the loss of her hearing.

"Digital Smoke Signals" (Canada, 2011, 3 min.)

Participants: Judith Schuyler, Cecily Jacko, Lucy Brown, Eugene Hendiks. A stop-motion animation celebrates indigenous cultural icon Buffy Sainte-Marie. Created during the 2011 Aboriginal People's Collaborative Exchange between Khoi-San youth from South Africa and First Nations youth from Toronto.

"TOMORROW" (Canada, 2007, 5 min.)

Director: Michelle Latimer (Métis). Life-altering news forces a young woman to make a difficult decision.

Scroll to Continue

Read More

"Honey for Sale" (Canada, 2009, 7 min.)


Director: Amanda Strong (Métis). The tenuous life of the honeybee sheds light on human fragility.

"Pride" (Canada, 2011, 3 min.)

Director: Keelan Keeshig (Ojibwe). A young man recounts the pressure he faced to cut his long hair.

"freek whency" (Canada, 2011, 8 min.)

Director: Janet Rogers (Mohawk/Tuscarora). Sound compositions, interviews and sound poetry evoke the "spirit of radio."

"?E?anx (The Cave)" (Canada, 2009, 11 min.)

Director: Helen Haig-Brown (Tsilhqot'in). A hunter discovers a portal to the spirit world.

The 1491s: NDN Country in Cyberspace

"The 1491s is a sketch comedy group, based in the wooded ghettos of Minnesota and buffalo grass of Oklahoma. They are a gaggle of Indians chock full of cynicism and splashed with a good dose of indigenous satire. They coined the term All My Relations, and are still waiting for the royalties. They were at the Custer's Last Stand. They mooned Chris Columbus when he landed. They invented bubble gum. The 1491s teach young women how to be strong. And... teach young men how to seduce these strong women."

The 1491s presents a curated show of not just their own snarky videos, but videos hand-picked from all that NDN Country has to offer in the previously uncharted territories know as the Web.

Dallas Goldtooth (Dakota/Dine) is a Dakota language specialist who has performed and made short comedy films with his partner, Migizi Pensoneau. He is part of the Indigenous Environmental Network, a grassroots organization educating Indigenous peoples on environmental and human rights issues.

Sterlin Harjo (Seminole/Creek) has been described as "one of the most truthful and honest voices working in American cinema today." His feature films, Four Sheets to the Wind and Barking Water, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and screened at previous Native Cinema Showcases. He has received several prestigious awards, including the United States Artists Fellowship and the Creative Promise Award from Tribeca All Access.

Migizi Pensoneau (Ponca/Ojibwe) is a contract writer for film studios. In 2004 he attended the Disney-ABC Summer Film and Television Writing Workshop at the Institute of American Indian Arts, and was selected as a Writing Fellow in 2005.

Ryan Red Corn (Osage) is the owner of the graphic design firm Red Hand Media and the co-chairman of NVision, a Native-run non-profit youth media organization. In 2008, he participated in ReelNative, WGBH's traveling training workshop for new directors, and has since directed several short films.

Bobby Wilson (Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota/Standing Rock Lakota) is a visual and spoken-word artist whose work has been featured in galleries, music venues, city streets and indigenous community events across the country. He has most recently shown at All My Relations Gallery, Ancient Traders Gallery, and Intermedia Arts.