Realms of Resilience - ALL ARTS Artist in Residence 2024

Realms of Resilience is a documentary by self-taught Dakota artist Marlena Myles that premiered on April 9, 2024 on the ALL ARTS site, app, and broadcast channel. The documentary uses augmented reality and digital technology to reveal Indigenous connections with the natural world, while also sharing stories that inspire hope, strength, and love for future generations. The documentary was filmed on the Spirit Lake Dakota reservation in North Dakota and in areas around Minneapolis & Saint Paul, Minnesota.

In each year of the Artist in Residence program, multi-disciplinary artists create original programs that bring their unique vision and work to ALL ARTS. The 2024 cohort features Mahogany L. Browne, Marlena Myles and Kenneth Tam.

the art of

Marlena Myles

digital artist + animator + fabric/fashion designer + +augmented reality + book illustrator + free resources

Marlena Myles

Marlena Myles is a self-taught Native American (enrolled Spirit Lake Dakota & also Mohegan/Muscogee) artist located in St Paul, Minnesota. Her art brings modernity to Indigenous history, languages and oral traditions while using the land as a teacher. Growing up on her traditional Dakota homelands here in the Twin Cities, she enjoys using her artwork to teach Minnesotans of all backgrounds the Indigenous history of this place we call home.

Her professional work includes children’s books, augmented reality, murals, fabrics, animations and has shown her fine art in galleries such as the Minneapolis Institute of Art, The Museum of Russian Art, and the Minnesota Museum of American Art to name a few.  In 2022, she created the Google Doodle for Native American Heritage Month (November) to celebrate North American Indigenous Stickball.

She has installed three site-specific augmented reality public art installations: the Dakota Spirit Walk (Saint Paul), the Sacred Hoop Walk (Minnesota Landscape Arboretum) and the Wodakota Walk (Caponi Art Park). She owns a Dakota publishing company, Wíyouŋkihipi (We Are Capable) Productions, to create a wider platform that educates and honors the culture, language and history of Dakota people. In 2023, she was awarded the Knight Arts + Tech Fellowship, Joyce Award, Rise25 Mozilla Honoree and is a 2024 ALL ARTS Artist in Resident.

Upcoming events

Dakhóta Thamákhočhe (Dakota Land Maps)

These maps illustrate the story of the past, present and future of Dakota people and our language in our traditional homelands. Visit the project page to download free posters, purchase larger maps, hear audio and learn more about the lands Dakota people have called home for generations upon generations.

 

Bde Óta Othúŋwe & Imnížaska Othúŋwe
Minneapolis & St. Paul, Minnesota (Twin Cities)

 

Minnesota River Valley Dakota landmap

Mnísota Wakpá Makhósmaka
Minnesota River Valley – including Bloomington, Edina, Wayzata, Chanhassan, Chaska, Shakopee, Prior Lake, Belle Plaine, Mankato, Owatonna, Waseca, New Ulm, Sleepy Eye, Redwood Falls, Lower Sioux Community, Granite Falls, Upper Sioux Community, Montevideo, Pipestone.

Thíŋta Wíta – Ȟemníčhaŋ Othúŋwe Wašté – Winúŋna
Prairie Island, Red Wing & Winona, Minnesota

Augmented Reality Public Art Installations

Augmented Reality is the perfect metaphor for Native Presence: Dakota peoples histories and stories are here, invisible at the moment to many; yet folks only need to look with new eyes at the deeper powers held here. This technology brings that ancient knowledge into the present, for future generations to access. Check out the different augmented reality installations that I’ve created in Minnesota.

Dakota Spirit Walk

Location: Saint Paul, Minnesota
Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary

The Dakota Spirit Walk is a permanent augmented reality public art installation that honors, educates and connects visitors to Dakota history, culture and significance of land through the art and storytelling of Marlena Myles, Spirit Lake Dakota. Visitors will meet four Dakota spirits who will share wisdom, history and cultural connections of the sacred sites at Wakan Tipi.

 

Sacred Hoop Walk

Location: Chaske, Minnesota
Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

The Sacred Hoop Walk is an augmented reality art exhibition at the Arboretum, which begins in the Harrison Sculpture Garden. Guided by Wohpe, the Dakota spirit whose gentle hand wove beauty, compassion, and harmony into the fabric of life, visitors walk within the Čhaŋhdéska Wakháŋ, the sacred hoop that unites the sacred motion of the universe. We learn from the seasons, plant nation and the interconnectedness between all life.

 

Wodakota Walk

Location: Eagan, Minnesota
Caponi Art Park

The Wodakota Walk is a permanent augmented reality installation that weaves Dakota stories into the landscape of the park. The five stops of the project are a bridge to Indigenous values and lessons based on Dakota understandings, and encourages us to use our natural born gifts to make a positive difference in the world. Wodakota means creating peace and harmony with the universe and communities around us, it’s also the translation of treaty into Dakota.

 

Recent work

BEHIND MY ART

I create my digital art using Adobe Illustrator.  Each piece consists of hundreds of layers, gradients and shapes placed upon each other.  When people think of Native American art, they may recall the geometric abstract styles that were historically used by women, or the figurative war scenes created by men, but my art combines both in a fresh way to revamp what people might think of Native art.

I have created works for children’s books, coloring books, animations and fine art in galleries such as  at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, Red Cloud Heritage Center, the Minnesota Museum of American Art, the South Dakota Art Museum, and the Museum of Nebraska Art to name a few.

Blog

My blog features interviews and news articles about my work as well as my writings, reviews and critique about (Native) art.

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