"Tuku, Eve'Ah, Tulaka"

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Gerald Clarke Jr.
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In this work, I am using Cahuilla language to express both a continuum of our cultural practices, but also the power of living in the present. The work features gourd rattles and bandanas with text hanging over a grinding stone with a scattering of poker chips across the floor.

Playing With Language

The title of this work is actually a play on words. Tuku means yesterday in the Cahuilla language while Tulakah refers to tomorrow. In between, I have inserted the word Eve'ah. I've "created" this word as a combination of Iva'a meaning power or strength with the word Iva'x which refers to today or now. Both the words sound similar but have different pronunciation.

Many Native people have been socialized to think that our past is more important than our present or future.

Many Native people have been socialized to think that our past is more important than our present or future. With this wordplay, I wanted to express the power of our lives TODAY and into the 21st Century. To be honest, if I just focused on our past and all of the suffering that the Cahuilla People have endured, I'd go crazy. Instead, I choose to revel in the miracle that we are still here.

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