Presented by the MFA in Studio Arts Program at the Institute of American Indian Arts and SITE Santa Fe, Dispatch is a score by Pulitzer-Prize winning composer and artist Raven Chacon (Navajo Nation) and internationally renowned curator and writer Candice Hopkins (Carcross/Tagish). Performed in collaboration with artists Ursala Hudson, Mekko Harjo, and Kimberly Fulton Orozco, Dispatch draws from Chacon and Hopkins’ reflections on the fight for cultural preservation and defense of Indigenous sovereignty at the Standing Rock Reservation Water Protector encampment in 2016.
Published in three parts — or ‘Dispatches’— the work is either a transcription of events around the 2016 DAPL encroachment at Standing Rock, a prompt for an ecological oral future, or at the very least, a critique of the privilege of meditative Deep Listening. This score can be realized as a performance or as a series of imagined events. It can also be enacted in the real world. The players, the prompts, and the schematics are derived from an analysis of the surface dynamics and organization of the Water Protectors in defense of Standing Rock during the #noDAPL movement, not glossing over the miscommunication, profiteering, and injustices. In an increasingly fractured society, new paths and new formations are needed to refocus our attention in an attempt to find truth. Participating in this score may produce sonic or visual artifacts, these are as important as the actions.