United colors of protest
¡Buen Vivir! is back with more activist photography and film
Pride Parade. Allentown. Buffalo, NY, June 4, 2017
Photos courtesy of the artist and gallery
Johanna C. Dominguez: One World: Issues Across and Through Skins is on view at ¡Buen Vivir! Gallery for Contemporary Art, 148 Elmwood Avenue September 14–November 2, with an opening reception September 14, 6–9 p.m. The gallery kicks off a celebration of fifteen years of the Global Justice Ecology Project on September 15, 6 p.m. with another reception and a private showing of The Story of a Forest.
Johanna C. Dominguez sees her camera as “simply a vehicle” for recording the importance of protest. Between 2016 and 2018, Dominguez has had plenty of opportunities to record protest events, some in Buffalo, others in spots as far-flung as Karinde, Kenya. The issues are different but often connected: both Seneca Nation members and Kenyan villagers are protesting corporate takeovers of their watersheds, for instance. Dominguez has an eye for vivid color and seems captivated by the brilliant costumes, flags, and signs of the activists she documents. The protests are heartfelt and often prompted by tragic actions, but Dominguez finds optimism and hope. These are not images of desperation.
¡Buen Vivir! has been on a year-long hiatus, but has wisely decided to resume operations and continue its mission to highlight the activities of the nonprofit Global Justice Ecology Project, which is run by gallery cofounders Orin Langelle and Anne Petermann. In addition to the Dominguez show, there is also a September 15 screening of the yet-to-be-released film, director Suki deJong’s The Story of a Forest, a half-hour documentary of the ten-plus-year campaign to stop the development of a Scripps Biotech campus in the middle of the biodiverse Briger forest and wetlands.
From top: Johanna Dominguez, Members of the Seneca Nation drum during the Water is Life Solidarity March. Canalside. Buffalo, NY, January 29, 2017; Women of the remote village of Kalokol, Kenya. December 6, 2017; No Ban. No Wall. Rally for Immigrant Refugee & Muslim Solidarity Rally. Columbus Park. Buffalo, NY. February, 5, 2017; Western New York Rally for Transgender Rights. City Hall. Buffalo, NY. February 26, 2017