Travois First Fridays: “Domiciles” by Chris T. Cornelius

Travois First Fridays on March 2 will feature artist Chris T. Cornelius, a citizen of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, and his “Domiciles” exhibition. The Travois office will be open from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., and we’re thrilled that Chris will join us and will present an artist talk at 6:30 p.m.

Preregister for the free event here.

Chris is an associate professor of architecture at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee who focuses his research and practice on the architectural translation of culture; in particular, American Indian culture. He is the founding principal of studio:indigenous, a design and consulting practice serving American Indian clients.

In his artist statement, Chris said the work he is presenting “examines the nineteen-month American Indian occupation of Alcatraz Island from November 20, 1969 to June 11, 1971. The occupiers took the island through by asking the U.S. Government to honor a treaty they had made 100 years prior. They did not want the island for financial or political gain; they wanted it to create an American Indian cultural center that included American Indian Studies, and American Indian spiritual center, an ecology center and an American Indian Museum. My work supposes, ‘What if they got what they wanted?’ and I will be designing the results.

“The visual representations presented here are process drawings and are a means to visualize the importance of that occupation in that place; at that time. It is an important time in our country’s history when American Indians were speaking openly about their distrust of the American Government, their policies, and American Indian life. For me, the work reflects on the importance of those events and is a way of bringing attention to the same issues in 21st Century America.

A short video about Chris’ “Wiikiaami” project will also be shown on a loop throughout the evening. Learn more about Chris on his website at, Facebook page at and on Instagram @christcornelius.

Travois First Fridays was created to highlight the strength and modern-day vitality of American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian artists and to stimulate art purchases and commissions within Kansas City.

The Travois First Fridays jury selected Chris as a featured artist for the exhibition series, and we will announce the rest of the 2018 schedule soon. Visit our website for more information.

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