connecting with the cosmos at gray mountain


ryan pinto with superimposed tattoo by cheyenne randall; text by winona laduke written by dave young kim



tank 2 with the ipanema sidewalk pattern (lifeguard stand #7) over labrona’s “nesting birds” from 2015


“no to racism” print with my justseeds collaborator thea gahr over troy lovegate’s “man eating ramen noodles on the run” from 2015


anishinabbe/ojibwe activist from the white earth reservation in minnesota winona laduke’s quote reads “power is not brute force and money; power is in your spirit. power is in your soul. it is what your ancestors, your old people gave you. power is in the earth; it is in your relationship to the earth.”  the mushroom cloud over the land was painted by jerrel singer who is from gray mountain originally. this piece was designed by erin joyce.


for months before installing this photo in oakland last summer i tried to find out who the baby is being tossed in the air. no luck. that was not until i was installing at gray mountain recently and this happened… while installing at gray mountain several folks stopped by to share the love. one guy pulled up in a pick up truck, got out and said “hey – you know that photo you put up in oakland last year with the baby being tossed in the air? well, that was me.” (vernon shorty in the bottom right hand photo who never lost his smile from being tossed in the air.) 45 minutes later a woman pulled up in a car, got out and said “i’m sarafina. you’ve been in touch with me since february about the poster of my sister, nicole joe, who was murdered christmas day 2017. it was my mom who pulled up here in february and asked you to put something up about nicole.” (pictured in the bottom left image. vernon is her brother.) when i pasted the picture of saraphina on mother’s day i worried that the image of the lamb beside her had religious overtones. i don’t know saraphina or vernon and i didn’t know nicole. nicole’s sister, sarafina, talked with me about 45 minutes. she shed tears as she reminisced about how close she and her sister were. sarafina said that as children growing up in big mountain they spent a lot of time herding sheep and that if there were any orphaned lambs, nicole would adopt them. sarafina was touched to see the image of the lamb beside her sister + wondered how i knew. boom!


…with the happy, flying baby vernon shorty


…with saraphina joe


…with historian + storyteller wally brown


nizhoni russell holding my business card

this is nizhoni russell’s brother whose name i can’t remember.


former navajo nation fire fighter + current hotshot, harry black showing off his guns.


painted desert project visiting artist, dave young kim prepping the tank before writing text.


walk around the tanks at gray mountain…


  2 comments for “connecting with the cosmos at gray mountain

  1. Roy Burgess
    June 14, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Great story with wonderful photos and a visually stunning video about fine art.


  2. June 14, 2018 at 4:46 pm

    Thanks so much Roy!


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