A solo exhibition of paintings by Annie Ross, one of the first to graduate from UC Davis with a doctoral degree in Native American studies in 2002, is at the C.N. Gorman Museum through March 11, 2016. Today she is an associate professor in First Nations studies at Simon Fraser University, British Columbia, Canada.
Her series Heroes/Ghosts reflects upon topics such as urban and state-sponsored violence, human-made climate change, and how aboriginal logic works, informs and prevails in its midst. Ross' studio practices reflect her research in social and environmental justice, indigenous sustainable technologies, grass-roots movements toward fulfillment of potential civil rights, the self and community in Home/Land.
In her gallery talk on Feb. 10, Ross reflected on Canadian forest clearcutting as an example of her research and posed that many other species—such as birds and animals—see it happening too. “All living beings experience and see the change, it’s not just human centric,” she said. “What is the truth in the situation?”
One of her paintings, “Ask Me, I Know,” focuses on a dark raven staring back from the canvas, a “ghost” ready to share truth if we dare ask. “We have a connection to the sacred wild,” said Ross.
Back in Davis for the first time since she graduated, Ross felt like she was returning home. “We all become a part of where we live. UC Davis was very good to me and gave me many opportunities — I am so grateful.”
C.N. Gorman Museum regular hours: noon-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, and 2-5 p.m. Sunday.