On May 1, 2019, ArtChangeUS, the CalArts Student Union, and the President’s Office hosted the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians for a “Whose Lands Are We On?: A Tataviam Teach-In” at CalArts campus, located on the traditional village of chaguayanga.

Pictured L to R: Eric Sanchez, Executive Director of Pukúu Cultural Community Services; Pamela Villaseñor, Executive Advisor; CalArts President Ravi S. Rajan; Tribal President Rudy Ortega Jr.; Tribal Citizen Timothy Ryan Ornelas; and Eloy Neira, CalArts Student Union president. [photo cred: CalArts]

Present to speak on behalf of the Tribe were: Timothy Ryan Ornelas, Media Services, Tataviam; Eric Sanchez, Executive Director of the Tribe’s non-profit Pukuu Cultural Community Services, Navajo-Tejano; Pamela Villaseñor, Executive Advisor, Tataviam; Alan Salazar, Elders Councilmember, Tataviam; and Tribal President Rudy Ortega Jr., Tataviam.

Timothy Ryan Ornelas shares his experience of being a Fernandeño Tataviam student at educational institutions within his homelands.

“Land acknowledgement is not about the soil we’re standing on, it’s about the people who were first here. And that’s what land acknowledgement is about—the relationship with the living and not the deceased,” shared Tribal President Rudy Ortega, a descendant of Chaguayanga.

Students gather around Roberta Uno, Director of Arts in a Changing America, as she shares the importance of land acknowledgement.

In Spring of 2018, the CalArts delegation met with the Tribe to facilitate a dialogue and relationship. This event continued that dialogue with the Tribe, and included the participation of the student body.

The Tribe thanks ArtChangeUS, the CalArts Student Union, and the CalArts Offices of the President and Provost for moderating and sponsoring the event.

For more information, please visit: https://blog.calarts.edu/2019/05/06/whose-land-are-we-on-a-tataviam-teach-in-at-calarts/