Oregon State hosting ‘Kalapuyan Land’ exhibition, talks
By Erin Sneller
OSU Events & Communication manager
CORVALLIS – An outdoor museum exhibition and series of talks recognizing native Kalapuyan history and land stewardship in Oregon started on Tuesday, May 11, at Oregon State University.
“This IS Kalapuyan Land” first opened at the Five Oaks Museum in Portland in 2019. The exhibition was guided by Five Oaks’ first guest curator, Grand Ronde Tribal member Steph Littlebird Fogel, in collaboration with several Indigenous historians, artists and cultural experts, including Oregon State College of Liberal Arts instructor and Grand Ronde Tribal member David Lewis.
The exhibition aims to prompt critical thinking around representation of Indigenous history and identity in non-Indigenous institutions. Five Oaks Museum later added a series of signs declaring “This IS Kalapuyan Land” that can be placed as pop-up exhibits in outdoor locations.
An Oregon State advisory committee started working last year to bring the exhibition to Corvallis, and created three new signs to accompany seven signs from the original Five Oaks exhibit. The signs were designed by Oregon State student Chanti Manon and will be displayed throughout the campus and in Oregon State research forests beginning in mid-May.
“The exhibit of signs will be there to remind people that this is and always will be Kalapuya land,” said advisory committee member Luhui Whitebear, assistant director of Oregon State’s Native American Longhouse Eena Haws and an anthropology and ethnic studies instructor. “As a land grant university, we at Oregon State have the responsibility to teach people that and to keep it centered in the work we do.”
In addition to the sign exhibit, Oregon State will hold a series of three talks starting on May 11. The remaining two talks will occur at 5 p.m. Tuesday, May 18, and Thursday, May 20.
On May 18, Lewis and Esther Stutzman, founding member of the Northwest Indian Storytellers Association, will discuss Tribal histories and connections. People can watch it live by visiting the Eena Haws Facebook page or register at https://beav.es/3Se.
On May 20, the series will focus on the original art exhibition hosted by Five Oaks and highlight some of the artists. Speakers will include Littlebird Fogel. People can watch it live by visiting the Eena Haws Facebook page or register at https://beav.es/3S2.
A video tour, event photos and additional information are available at dce.oregonstate.edu/nal/kalapuyanland.