Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, Queer and Trans People BEAD PROJECT (EVERY ONE):

Composed of over 4000 individual handmade clay beads created by hundreds of communities across the so called U.S. and Canada, Every One re-humanizes the data of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, queer and trans community members.

+ Each bead represents an individual from our Indigenous communities we have lost +

 12' H x 12' W beaded portrait using over 4,000 single 2" clay beads   Every One . Social collaboration, sculptural installation. Cannupa Hanska Luger 2018.  Image: Red Shawl Solidarity Society prayer action at the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, NM  April 26, 2018

12' H x 12' W beaded portrait using over 4,000 single 2" clay beads
 Every One. Social collaboration, sculptural installation. Cannupa Hanska Luger 2018. 
Image: Red Shawl Solidarity Society prayer action at the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, NM  April 26, 2018

The MMIWQT Bead Project is the first social engagement work of an ongoing series by artist Cannupa Hanska Luger titled Counting Coup. An instructional video was launched in January 2018 as a call for collaboration with communities from across the U.S. and Canada to create and send 2” clay beads which were then fired, stained in ink and strung together by Luger to create the monumental sculptural installation Every One; the pixelated image references the photograph Sister (2016) by First Nations photographer Kali Spitzer.

This social collaboration re-humanizes large and abstract data through the process of creating handmade objects representing each life in the over 4000 cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada, as sourced from research by the Native Women's Association of Canada in 2016. Luger embeds the queer and trans narrative into Every One to bring awareness to the fact that Indigenous LGBTQ+ community members are not included in data collection around this issue, yet these communities are impacted at comparable alarming rates to that of women.

Gratitude to all communities who engaged in this work and supported raising awareness and honoring the Indigenous women, girls, queer and trans community members we have lost in Canada. The narrative of MMIWQT expands beyond a specific region, and by acknowledging this number and this place and by creating collectively, we can move forward to address MMIWQT in all of our respective homelands, to raise awareness and cultivate policy. This project supports further exposure to the fact that we have minimal access to the data of MMIWQT cases in the U.S. at this point. Indigenous women are murdered at 10 times the national average rate on some reservations in the U.S., according to a 2008 report submitted to the U.S. Department of Justice. And unlike Canada, where Indigenous leaders and advocates have pressured the government to begin to confirm the data of missing and murdered Indigenous women, the U.S. continues to do little to address this issue.

If we had the funding to search and assess our data, I think we would find that we in the U.S. have absolutely similar numbers to Canada in terms of missing and murdered women. We share a parallel trauma and terrible things happen to our women, but it never seems to reach a priority among law enforcement. Our communities must empower themselves at the grassroots level to make change, otherwise it will never happen.” -Sarah Deer (Muscogee Nation) - Lawyer and professor of law at William Mitchell College who continues to advocate to end violence against Indigenous women.

Exhibition Timeline: 

 12' H x 12' W beaded portrait using over 4,000 single 2" clay beads   Every One . Social collaboration, sculptural installation. Cannupa Hanska Luger 2018.  Image: Lazy Stitch exhbition, May 3- July 21 2018 at ENT Gallery for Contemporary Art, Colorado Springs CO

12' H x 12' W beaded portrait using over 4,000 single 2" clay beads
 Every One. Social collaboration, sculptural installation. Cannupa Hanska Luger 2018. 
Image: Lazy Stitch exhbition, May 3- July 21 2018 at ENT Gallery for Contemporary Art, Colorado Springs CO


Thank you to all contributing communities and institutions to date including but not limited to:

  • Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, NM
  • Native American Longhouse Eena Haws, OR
  • Native American Student Program, University of California, CA
  • Oregon State University Pride Center, OR
  • Oregon State University Women's Center, OR
  • Park Avenue Armory Conservancy, NY
  • Philbrook Museum of Art, OK
  • Plains Art Museum, ND
  • Santa Fe Clay, NM
  • Santa Fe University of Art and Design, NM
  • Shambhala School, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • Tewa Women United, NM
  • Tulsa Artist Fellowship with Anita Fields, OK
  • University of California Riverside, CA
  • University of New Mexico, Anthropology Department, NM
  • Virginia Diversity Network & Collegiate School, VA
  • Young New Yorkers Against Gun Violence, NY
  • A'Gin Healthy Sexuality & Body Sovereignty Project, NM
  • American Indian College Fund, USA
  • ArtChangeUS, USA
  • Black Crow Pottery, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • Emerson Ecologics, CA
  • Fayette Street Academy, NM
  • Good Dirt Clay, CA
  • Idyllwild Arts, CA
  • Indigenous Goddess Gang, USA
  • Institute of American Indian Arts, NM
  • Institute of American Indian Arts Red Shawl Solidarity Project, NM
  • Institute of American Indian Arts Women's Society, NM
  • Kansas City Art Institute, MO
  • Michael C. Carlos Museum, GA
  • Moving Poets, NC
  • Murray State College Art Department, OK


  Sister  Archival pigment print of scanned tintype, Kali Spitzer. 2016    

Sister Archival pigment print of scanned tintype, Kali Spitzer. 2016 

 

MMIWQT Video Image Still 3.jpg
 12' H x 12' W beaded portrait using over 4,000 single 2" clay beads   Every One . Social collaboration, sculptural installation. Cannupa Hanska Luger 2018.  Image: Process photo of Cannupa Hanska Luger dying and stringing bead and constructing strands at the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, NM  April 16, 2018

12' H x 12' W beaded portrait using over 4,000 single 2" clay beads
 Every One. Social collaboration, sculptural installation. Cannupa Hanska Luger 2018. 
Image: Process photo of Cannupa Hanska Luger dying and stringing bead and constructing strands at the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe, NM  April 16, 2018



++ Please note: Clay bead submission for this project is now closed ++

MMIWQT Video Production: Razelle Benally
MMIWQT Audio Production: Ginger Dunnill
MMIWQT Artist: Cannupa Hanska Luger
MMIWQT Photographer Collaboration: Kali Spitzer