Media Advisory | February 14, 2013

Artist James Luna speaks at UBC's Okanagan campus Feb. 28

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Political commentary mixes with art for narrative presentation

James Luna.

Artist James Luna.

What: Performance lecture
Who: James Luna, UBC's Okanagan campus visiting artist in residency
When: Thursday, February 28, 7 p.m.
Where:  University Theatre, Administration Building, 1138 Alumni Ave, UBC's Okanagan campus

Internationally renowned installation artist James Luna will deliver a performance lecture at UBC's Okanagan campus on Thursday, Feb. 28 (7 p.m., University Theatre in the Administration Building).

Luna is a Pooyukitchchum/Ipai native who takes his stories on the road to share his political and social commentary through performance art. He uses monologues, visual examples, and antics to tell stories that delve deep into the strife and misconceptions of ethnicity in America.

His powerful work transforms gallery spaces into battlefields, where the audience is confronted with the nature of cultural identity, the tensions generated by cultural isolation, and the dangers of cultural misinterpretations, all from an Indigenous perspective. Luna deals with the realities of race from an insider point of view.

For 30 years, Luna has produced a variety of works of art that illustrate his artistic, social, and political commentary. He is a powerful force in performance art today and has received numerous grants and awards throughout his career. A resident on the La Jolla Indian Reservation in North County San Diego, in 2012 Luna was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humanities from the Institute of American Indian Arts, in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

“James Luna has radically transformed our understanding of contemporary Indigenous art and its possibilities,” says Stephen Foster, associate professor of Creative Studies. “Through irony, humour, and strong sense narrative, his internationally recognized installation and performance art have challenged us to be more critically aware of the commonly held stereotypes of Aboriginal people.”

This event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Melissa McHugh in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies at

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Patty Wellborn
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