Weshoyot Alvitre

There is no suffrage in sovereignty (2017), Handwritten words on antique US flag, Dimensions variables

The piece There is no suffrage in sovereignty is hand-written text on an antique United States flag. The flag was in circulation from 1912-59. The antique flag was chosen as a basis for this piece, to put it into historical context of the beginning of the woman’s suffrage movement, and subsequent events for Native peoples such as citizenship, their right to vote, and afterwards of religious freedom and sovereignty. The flag was deliberately placed upside down, to bring attention to the “distress” state that Native people have been in prior to suffrage, during and after; and that the rights of Native peoples and Native women continue to go unaddressed. The flag was also chosen to represent the white dominant society, the blood spilled, and the disparity of size between the smaller star iconography (representing native peoples) and the white bloodshed that has occurred, cornering Native peoples through colonization.