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The lecture is free of charge and open to the public.
"... A tribal museum can help redefine what a museum can be for its community, which is more than just a community gathering place ... It's a place you can go and experience a sense of wonder. That sense of wonder is important--it gives us hope that humans have a future in this universe."
Born and raised on the Navajo Nation, Manuelito Wheeler is currently the Director of the Navajo Nation Museum in Window Rock, AZ. Since taking this position in 2008, he has worked with staff to see the completion of numerous exhibits which are 100% Native-built from concept, curation, and creation. Along with this, he has led his team (of 8) in creating innovative projects which influence and preserve Navajo culture.
In the pursuit of native language preservation, the Navajo Nation Museum has partnered with major motion picture studios like Lucasfilm Ltd., Walt Disney Pictures and Deluxe Studios to dub popular movies into the Navajo language. Making these projects a reality has been a challenging but rewarding experience. Currently the museum is completing a Navajo-language dub of Disney's classic animation film Finding Nemo.
Under Wheeler's direction, the Navajo Nation Museum has also worked with world renowned artist Ai Weiwei, partnering him with Navajo artist Bert Benally to create a site-specific installation piece in a remote canyon on the Navajo Nation.
Wheeler attended Arizona State University from 88-03 where he earned BA in Art History. He is married to Jennifer Wheeler, PhD (Arizona State University) and they have two sons Waunekanez (currently attending Arizona State University) and Hataaliinez.
To speak and act on behalf of ourselves as a human, social and cultural world, we are required to speak and act on behalf of land, culture, and community. No matter who we are, no matter what our livelihood is, and no matter what our inclinations are, we are bound by a relationship to the land upon which we live, the cultural knowledge by which we are guided, and the community we share with one another.
The Simon Ortiz and Labriola Center Lecture on Indigenous Land, Culture, and Community at Arizona State University addresses topics and issues across disciplines in the arts, humanities, sciences, and politics. Underscoring Indigenous American experiences and perspectives, this series seeks to create and celebrate knowledge that evolves from an inclusive Indigenous worldview and that is applicable to all walks of life.
The Simon Ortiz and Labriola Center Lecture on Indigenous Land, Culture, and Community seeks to speak, act, offer, and share in order to assume responsibility for land, culture, community that is our world.
ASU Sponsors: American Indian Policy Institute | American Indian Studies Program | Department of English | School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies | Indian Legal Program in the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law | Labriola National American Indian Data Center | School of Art in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts | Women and Gender Studies in the School of Social Transformation
Community Partner: Heard Museum