WBEZ | activist http://www.wbez.org/tags/activist Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Contemporary artist Bunky Echo-Hawk blends pop culture and Native American imagery http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/contemporary-artist-bunky-echo-hawk-blends-pop-culture-and-native-american-imagery <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/bunky.PNG" alt="" /><p><p>Science-fiction icon Yoda wears a feathered headdress, and a traditionally-dressed Native American rides a horse-sized iPhone.</p><p>Contemporary artist Bunky Echo-Hawk combines such pop culture references with Native American imagery to challenge stereotypes and highlight social issues in his community. He is a member of the Pawnee Nation of Oklahoma and the Yakama Nation of Washington.</p><p>The painter, photographer and writer helped curate a new exhibit at The Field Museum that runs through September 2014.</p><p>&ldquo;Bunky Echo-Hawk: Modern Warrior&rdquo; displays his work alongside several Pawnee artifacts that he helped to pick out of the Field&rsquo;s collection. He selected both decorative items and everyday objects to show how they can inspire people 100 years later. These items include a &ldquo;Ghost Dance&rdquo; dress, a deer-skin drum and a pair of the sneakers he designed for Nike.</p><blockquote><strong>Do you value learning more about Chicago cultural events like this? </strong></blockquote><blockquote><strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/donate" target="_blank">Help support WBEZ by making a donation today.</a></strong></blockquote><p>Alaka Wali, the Field Museum&rsquo;s curator of North American Anthropology, co-curated the exhibition with Echo-Hawk.</p><p>&ldquo;Despite (the Native American peoples&rsquo;) severe displacement and the very traumatic experiences that they&rsquo;ve had with Europeans since 1492, why have they been able or how have they been able to be resilient?&rdquo; Dr. Wali asked.&nbsp; &ldquo;To come back and maintain cultural identity despite very severe odds?&rdquo;</p><p>One of the ways Echo-Hawk seeks to keep his culture alive is through live painting, creating a work in front of an audience. He said it&rsquo;s a modern adaptation of a traditional Native American winter pastime, in which an artist recreates an event by drawing on animal hide, and talks with the people gathered around to get enough information to make an &ldquo;honest&rdquo; portrayal.</p><p>Echo-Hawk continued that tradition this past Saturday with a few tweaks:&nbsp; Instead of recreating a &ldquo;buffalo hunt&rdquo; or a &ldquo;great battle,&rdquo; audience members suggested he illustrate a racial stereotype or a historical or current event on canvas.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s an opportunity to kind of bridge the gap between then and now,&rdquo; Bunky Echo-Hawk said. &ldquo;It shows how we once lived and shows how we kind of live now, the things that were changed, the things that were gained and the things that were lost.&rdquo;</p><p><em>Lee Jian Chung is a WBEZ arts and culture intern. Follow him <a href="http://twitter.com/jclee89" target="_blank">@jclee89</a>.</em></p></p> Thu, 03 Oct 2013 13:14:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/contemporary-artist-bunky-echo-hawk-blends-pop-culture-and-native-american-imagery Prominent Chicago peace activist Michael McConnell dies of cancer http://www.wbez.org/news/prominent-chicago-peace-activist-michael-mcconnell-dies-cancer-106558 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/boots.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><em>Updated 10:35 a.m.</em></p><p dir="ltr" id="internal-source-marker_0.42524684720966965">Michael McConnell, a prominent Chicago anti-war activist, died Sunday, April 7, following a battle with cancer.</p><p>McConnell was regional director of the American Friends Service Committee and an ordained minister of the United Church of Christ.</p><p>At a 2010 panel recorded by <a href="http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/active-pacifism-waging-peace-through-active-nonviolence">WBEZ&#39;s <em>Chicago Amplified</em></a>, he said, &ldquo;Pacifism counters the &nbsp;myth that violence is the most powerful force. Pacifism must never be confused with passivity.&rdquo;</p><p>McConnell demonstrated this approach through his creativity in organizing marches, vigils and protests: He said pacifism was a form of combat, calling for tactics and strategy.</p><p>&ldquo;It has to be not only the head but the heart. And you have to have people understand war and peace on a visceral level.&quot;</p><p>In his own attempt to make the feeling of war more visceral, McConnell co-created <a href="https://afsc.org/campaign/eyes-wide-open">Eyes Wide Open,</a> an exhibit that displayed a pair of combat boots for every soldier that died in Iraq or Afghanistan.</p><p>The exhibit started in 2004 with 500 boots. As the casualties grew, so did the exhibit until 2007, when the casualties reached 3,500 and the project had to be divided into smaller exhibits.</p><p>Despite confronting violence almost daily, McConnell told a crowd that young people made him hopeful.</p><p>&ldquo;This is a generation that we can count on.&rdquo;</p><p>He agreed with a man at the event who called out, &ldquo;We may not get there with you.&rdquo; McConnell added, &ldquo;But you&rsquo;ll get there for us.&rdquo;</p><p><em>The visitation is Thursday, April 11, from 4 to 9 p.m. at John E. Maloney Funeral Home, 1359 W. Devon Ave. in Chicago. The memorial service is Friday, April 12, at 4 p.m., at Wellington Avenue United Church of Christ, 619 W. Wellington Ave.</em></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><em>Shannon Heffernan is a WBEZ reporter. Follow her at <a href="http://twitter.com/shannon_h" target="_blank">@shannon_h</a></em></p></p> Tue, 09 Apr 2013 08:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/prominent-chicago-peace-activist-michael-mcconnell-dies-cancer-106558 Global Notes: Sudanese rapper Emmanuel Jal pushes non-violence http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/global-notes-sudanese-rapper-emmanuel-jal-pushes-non-violence <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//ej.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>While the vote to determine whether southern Sudan becomes an independent country continues, Jerome and <a href="http://www.wbez.org/radio-m">Radio M</a> host Tony Sarabia examine the work of one of Sudan&rsquo;s most celebrated young artists. In this week's <a href="http://www.wbez.org/globalnotes">Global Notes</a> we take a look at the rapper, peace activist and former child soldier Emmanuel Jal.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><em>Track List:<br /></em></p><p><em>1. We Want Peace<br />2. Gua<br />3. Baai<br />4. 50 Cent<br />5. Mother<br />6. War Child</em></p><object width="560" height="340"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/g1ZEJWVSiEI?fs=1&amp;hl=en_US" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed width="560" height="340" src="http://www.youtube.com/v/g1ZEJWVSiEI?fs=1&amp;hl=en_US" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 12 Jan 2011 16:36:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/global-notes-sudanese-rapper-emmanuel-jal-pushes-non-violence American Indian activist Ada Deer comes to Chicago http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/american-indian-activist-ada-deer-comes-chicago <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//ada deer sec. of interior.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>For decades now, <a href="http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/topics/deer/" target="_blank">Ada Deer</a> has been fighting for the rights of American Indians.<br /><br />The activist and educator has even taken on the powers that be in D.C. to reinstate federal recognition of her own tribe, the <a href="http://www.menominee-nsn.gov/" target="_blank">Menominee of Wisconsin</a>.</p><p>Deer was later named Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs at the <a href="http://www.doi.gov/index.cfm" target="_blank">U.S. Department of the Interior</a>. She is also a long-time advocate for American Indian rights and a distinguished lecturer emerita at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.</p><p>It seems fitting, then, that the <a href="http://www.mitchellmuseum.org/" target="_blank">Mitchell Museum of the American Indian</a> asked Deer to speak on social justice Dec. 8. Her talk, entitled &quot;A Path to Social Justice,&quot; gets underway at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday and will launch the museum's first anual <a href="http://www.mitchellmuseum.org/documents/MontezumaLecture_Flyer_2010.pdf" target="_blank">Dr. Carlos Montezuma Honororary Lecture</a>. It takes place at the <a href="http://www.musicinst.org/" target="_blank">Music Institute of Chicago</a> in Evanston.</p></p> Tue, 07 Dec 2010 13:57:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/american-indian-activist-ada-deer-comes-chicago DuSable Museum founder left lasting legacy http://www.wbez.org/story/activist/dusable-museum-founder-left-lasting-legacy <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//Margaret Burroughs.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Updated: 1:57pm: The founder of Chicago&rsquo;s DuSable Museum of African-American History has died at the age of 93. Margaret Burroughs believed in public accessibility of art.</p> <div>Up until a month ago Burroughs went bowling every Friday night. The artist often carried a roll of her prints under her arm and gave them out freely. Burroughs gave advice to aspiring writers &ndash; young and old.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div><div>&quot;Her hallmark to me was her accessibility,&quot; said Carol Adams, who currently runs DuSable Museum &ndash; the first black history museum of its kind in the U.S.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div><div>Burroughs founded the museum in 1961 when weekly salon-style gatherings grew too large for her home. Artists like Gwendolyn Brooks, Langston Hughes, Margaret Walker and Paul Robeson attended. She was an institution builder. If I could summarize her, I&rsquo;d say that she was the exemplar of the power of one,&quot; Adams said.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Burroughs also founded the South Side Community Arts Center. It&rsquo;s still around after 70 years.</div></p> Mon, 22 Nov 2010 11:40:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/activist/dusable-museum-founder-left-lasting-legacy