Char-Koosta News

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REZ MADE: Photographs from Two Eagle River School students

By Brandon Reintjes
Senior Curator at Missoula Art Museum

MISSOULA — Missoula Art Museum presents photos by Two Eagle River School students on October 3 through December 31 in Lela Autio Education Gallery at the Missoula Art Museum located at 335 N Pattee St. First Friday with the Artists will be on October 6 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and a gallery talk at 7 p.m.

Rez Made is an exhibition featuring 14 student-photographers from Two Eagle River School on the Flathead Indian Reservation in Pablo. In the spring of 2016, photographer, educator, and mentor David Spear led the group of students to New York City for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. “The idea of this trip is to have young people, who are invested in photography, get a general idea of the photo business,” Spear said. The students toured The New York Times, New York University’s photography program, Aperture Magazine, International Center of Photography, and the photography collection at the Museum of Modern Art. They also attended an advanced photojournalism and portrait classes, all in between shooting on the streets of New York.

The work in the exhibition ranges from street photography to architectural documentation in both black-and-white and color. The collection of images showcases strong photographic skills and diverse artistic visions in a group of students from rural Montana, many whom have never left the state. The student-photographers are: Lee Atwin, Shawncee Brave Rock, Nikki Burke, Tristin George, Nina Leone Hernandez, Taelyn Lafley, Whisper Michel, Jenna Mullaney, Esperanza Orozco-Charlo, Alexia Parizeau, Mars Sandoval, Xavier Smith, Michelle Tomma, and Bailey Wippert.

Spear coordinated this unique opportunity and life changing experience. Before moving to Montana, Spear taught at New York University and the International Center for Photography, where he developed the Community Outreach Program for underserved communities of New York City. In 2002, he began teaching photography at Salish-Kootenai College and started Our Community Record: Two Eagle River School on the Flathead Indian Reservation, a project that encourages students to explore and document their community, culture, and history through storytelling and photographic studies. Spear is Co-founder and Director of A VOICE-Art, Vision & Outreach In Community Education, a non-profit organization that provides art-based educational programming in Montana rural communities and which helped support Rez Made.

For more information call (406) 728-0447.
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