ISHI: The Archive Performance
ISHI: The Archive Performance | Photo: Courtesy of TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary

ISHI: The Archive Performance

Performative work explores the true story of Ishi

Amy Jo Espetveidt

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Written and performed by James Luna, this performative piece tells the story of Ishi, an Indigenous man who walked into a California town and was kept as a living specimen.

His sudden appearance in the small northern California town of Oroville inspired fright, laughter, and pity. The conclusion was that Ishi was indeed the last of his tribe and, for his own welfare and for the advancement of science, that he would occupy the Museum on the University of California Berkeley’s campus. He spent his remaining years there as a living specimen.

Presented by Mountain Standard Time Performative Art Festival, the University of Calgary, and TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary, archives suggest there is more to this story so Luna created a performative piece that explores Ishi’s significant life.

Following the performance, James Luna’s Performagraphic will open next door at TRUCK’s Main Space (2009 10th Ave. SW).

ISHI: The Archive Performance takes place at 7:00pm on October 22, 2016 at West Village Theatre (2007 10th Ave. SW).