SUNDAY ~ January 31


Created by Jessica Mehta
Directed by Jessica Mehta
Producer: This Cherokee Rose*

emBODY poetry is a virtual tour of Jessica Mehta’s series that marries an experimental form of poetry with family archival photos. Mehta is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, native Oregonian—and the only person in her immediate family to never be incarcerated. Mass incarceration is just one of many disparities faced by indigenous people in North America today, with Native women imprisoned at a rate six times higher than their white counterparts. Red/Act III creates a visual narrative blended with poetry that traces Mehta’s ancestry lineage to Nede Wade in the 1890s. Wade, Mehta’s great-great uncle, was a Cherokee legislator dubbed the “most dangerous man in Indian country” prior to being shot by police and his body displayed on the street for photo opportunities. This series explores what it means to be indigenous today through a reverse form of poetry, intimate family photos, and finds that we are not so far from our seemingly “distant” past that informs who we are.

*GROW AWARD recipient

(1 minute, 30 seconds)

Donate to this project:  Native American Rights Fund