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Mazinaateseg: Anishinaabe Films and Their Makers

March 9, 2016

Mazinaateseg: Anishinaabe Films and Their Makers

According to the Ojibwe People’s Dictionary, Mazinaateseg means “It is a movie” in Ojibwe.   Join us for a night of Anishinaabe short and animated films hosted by Elizabeth Day and Heid E. Erdrich.

Some of our titles for the evening include:

Advice To Myself 2: Resistance
Advice To Myself 2: Resistance

Advice To Myself 2: Resistance  (Elizabeth Day, Heid E. Erdrich and Louise Erdrich with music by Trevino Brings Plenty.
Shot on the coldest and snowiest day of the year, Advice to Myself 2: Resistance presents a visual and verbal collaboration between author Louise Erdrich, her poet sister Heid E. Erdrich, and artist Elizabeth Day.  A figure dressed as a bear moves through a frozen yet domestic landscape, at times using a blade to practice martial arts moves, at other times carrying a baby in a woven carrier–all the while her movements juxtapose the voice of Louise Erdrich speaking a poem.  Text enters the scene at moments as well.  Throughout the “poemeo” as Louise calls the form, the bear gives us clues to her indigenous identity in her jingle dress moves, her beaded mukluks, the willow basket she carries.  The words of the poem offer a message of personal, political and universal resistance.  In the last moments, the bear’s identity is briefly revealed.

 

GAA-ONDINANG DAKWAANOWED MAKWA/ How the Bear Got a Short Tail (Directed by Elizabeth Day, written and voiced by Anna Gibbs, produced by Heid E. Erdrich for Wiigwaas Press/Birchbark House. Animated by Jonathan Thunder. 2015.)
Narrated by elder Anna Gibbs entirely in Anishinaabemowin, the language of the Ojibwe people, “Gaa-ondinang dakawaanowed Makwa” or “How the Bear Got A Short Tail,” tells a story about gifts of the Creator and a lesson in humility.  In this fully animated Anishinaabemowin tale, we meet Makwa, the bear, who brags up his gorgeous tail and enrages bushy-tailed Fox.  Many woodland creatures appear as they were before the Creator gave them their gifts, such as Skunk whose stripes are yet to appear. Seasons, the heavens, and the creatures of the lake and woods figure prominently in this story for those learning the Anishinaabe language.

 

Undead Faerie Goes Great with India Pale Ale
Undead Faerie Goes Great with India Pale Ale

Gii-mawinzowaad Makoons Miinawaa Nigigoons (Directed by Elizabeth Day, animated by Jonathan Thunder)
Written in Anishinaabemowin by Rose Tainter and Lisa LaRonge and adapted to the screen by Director Elizabeth Day and animated by Jonathan Thunder.

 

Undead Faerie Goes Great with India Pale Ale (Heid E. Erdrich/Jonathan Thunder, 2015)

 

Returning
Returning

Returning (Elizabeth LaPensée and edited by Sky Hopinka, 2015).

Stories of space canoes and space/time travel across dimensions unravel to “Trade Song” by the Métis Fiddler Quartet in this bitwork beadwork experimental stop motion animation.

The Path Without End
The Path Without End


The Path Without End 
(Elizabeth LaPensée, 2011)

Non-linear stories of Anishinaabe Moon People unravel in this stop motion animation set to music by Cree cellist Cris Derksen. Named in honor of Basil Johnston

 

The Sleeping Dead (Written, Directed and Edited by Frankie McNamara, 2015).

This is a short film about a college student who sleeps at random times but can’t sleep at night. He is going through a transformation from human to zombie. Is it reality or just a dream? This film is a combination of a comedy and horror film.


About our Hosts and Filmmakers:

Heid Erdrich by Chris Felver 15
Heid E. Erdrich

Heid E. Erdrich’s collaborative poem films have been selected for screening at festivals in the U.S. and Canada including ImagineNative, Co-Kisser, Vision Maker, Iron Horse Review, and at the Santa Fe Indian Market Class-X film competition. These films have won a Judges Award, a Best of Fest, and two Best Experimental Short awards. She is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently Cell Traffic from University of Arizona Press. Her recent non-fiction book is Original Local: Indigenous Food Stories. Heid grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota and is Ojibwe enrolled at Turtle Mountain. She teaches the MFA Creative Writing program of Augsburg College.

Elizabeth Day
Elizabeth Day

Elizabeth Day (producer, director, writer) Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe  is a filmmaker from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Born on the Leech Lake Reservation and raised in the Twin Cities area, Day blends her Native American heritage with her urban upbringing to create films that employ traditional Ojibwe-style storytelling while using contemporary filmmaking techniques. Her work often explores the tension between traditional Native teachings and the life of a modern, urban Indian.
A primary motivation for Day is recording and capturing the quickly fading pastimes of Ojibwe culture, an important and integral piece of Minnesota’s history. Through the medium of film, she examines a broad swath of Native history, from the rich Ojibwe tradition of storytelling to the painful history of government-enforced boarding schools to the modern-day identity issues faced by Native families

Elizabeth LaPensée
Elizabeth LaPensée

Elizabeth LaPensée  is an Anishinaabe, Métis, and Irish artist whose works in digital art, games, animations, and comics speak to teachings and stories that span spacetime. With over ten years of developing her aesthetic along with holding a Ph.D. in Interactive Arts & Technology, she continues to expand her body of work in the hopes of continuing the ways in which Woodlands style expresses scientific knowledge and the truths in traditional stories.

Her prior work includes: Survivance (2011), The Nature of Snakes (2012), The Path Without End (2011), and The West Was Lost (2008)

Jonathan Thunder
Jonathan Thunder

Jonathan Thunder (painter, digital media artist) is a painter and digital media artist currently residing in Duluth, Minnesota. He has attended the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Visual Effects and Motion Graphics from the Art Institutes International Minnesota. His work has been featured in many state, regional, and national exhibitions, as well as in local and international publications.

Frankie McNamara
Frankie McNamara

Frankie McNamara (film student) is from St. Paul, Minnesota. His family is from Red Lake Nation of Ojibwe and his mother Brenda Child is a professor of American Studies and American Indian studies at the University of Minnesota.  He is currently a film student at Augsburg College, where he is learning the craft of filmmaking and creating short films.

Location and Time:

Augsburg College
Sateren Auditorium, Music Hall, 715 22nd Ave South
Talk with Students 5:00-6:00
Reception 6:15-6:45
Screening begins at 7:00
Discussion with filmmakers follows
This event is free to the public.

Thank you to our sponsors: Augsburg College, American Indian Studies Department, Augsburg Indigenous Student Association, Augsburg’s Marginalized Voices in Film and Media, the Institute for Global Studies at the University of Minnesota

For parking permits contact M. Elise Marubbio at marubbio@augsburg.edu. Permits are limited in number. For parking directions visit: http://www.augsburg.edu/about/map/. You will be parking in Lot L off of 35th between Riverside and Butler Pl. You will need a parking permit: please contact marubbio@augsburg.edu.

If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to the Augsburg Native American Film Series or this project, please send your checks to:

Augsburg Native American Film Series
Augsburg College, CB 115
2011 Riverside Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55454