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Decolonize Dallas: Water is Life - Closing Celebration

  • Trans.lation: Vickery Meadow 8361 Park Ln Dallas, Texas 75231 (map)

Join American Indian Heritage Day, Ash Studios, and Trans.lation Vickery Meadow for the final unveiling and celebration of artwork created during Community Artmaking day.

Curatorial Statement:
Dallas is not Dallas, it is occupied former Mexico. Mexico is not Mexico, it is occupied former Wichita land. Uptown is not Uptown, it is occupied former Freedman’s Town. And the hundreds of thousands of forced migrants in Dallas, whether it be through the Transatlantic slave trade, Trail of Tears, Hurricane Katrina, or refugee resettlement system, are questioning what it means to be landless. Dallas is built upon a history of colonialism and violence obscured by respectability politics and a history of Accommodation. Currently the site of immense financial capital and immense income disparity and segregation, Dallas engages in the neocolonial practice of concentrating capital in the hands of the few while depending on the exploitation of many. 

As Dallas continues to grow in profile as a global city due to the presence of capital, redevelopment, and a thriving cultural community, a simultaneous need arises to decolonize Dallas’s troubled history and present. While Dallas likes to speak of itself as a city of the future, this colorblind futurism erases historical violences that shaped Dallas and continue to shape its present and future. Who gets to speak for Dallas? Who claims its history? Who claims belonging? 

Decolonize Dallas is a series of events and exhibitions that activate historical memory through culture in four contested sites throughout the city of Dallas. Decolonize Dallas focuses on cultural producers and communities on the margins to reshape dominant narratives of identity and history in Dallas. It is neither the beginning nor the end, but rather a continuation of a long, difficult process towards transformation and reconciliation in a divided city.