Form & Concept

Other Dates

Form & Concept

435 S Guadalupe St. Santa Fe, NM 87501, Santa Fe NM 87501


No Cost | No Cost


Phone | 505.982.8111 x1008


Native Realities: Superheroes of Past, Present, and Future

New show launching at form and concept, featuring Native Comic Artists

Santa Fe, NM – A groundbreaking new show,

Native Realities: Superheroes of Past, Present,

and Future opens at form and concept gallery in

Santa Fe on November 11

th 2016. The show is

being held in conjunction with the world’s first

Indigenous Comic Con, which launches in

Albuquerque on November 18

th at the National

Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.

Native Realities shares the stories of

superheroes across Native cultures. With

comics created by youth and teachers in Zuni

Pueblo, and the works of professional comic

artists Weshoyot Alvitre (Tongva), Jonathan

Nelson (Diné), Jon Proudstar (Yaqui), Ryan

Singer (Navajo), and Arigon Starr (Kickapoo),

the show invites the public to consider the role

of heroes - defined as everyday people doing

extraordinary work - in our lives.

The opening at form & concept will feature

presentations by students and leaders from

Zuni Pueblo. The Zuni Pueblo project

partnered with UNM ZETAC (Zuni: Engaging

Teachers and Community), a W. K. Kellogg

Foundation initiative, to work with Zuni public

school teachers to develop project-based

curriculum from a cultural perspective. In Zuni Pueblo, teachers and the youth are working to

keep their language alive through classroom activities.

“My comic is about a superhero who comes and makes our gardens grow by bringing the rain”

explained one 6th grader. A teacher described her superhero, Yucca Girl, as a character of

resiliency. “After my sister passed away I started making baskets. I would collect the yucca for

the baskets and being outside, being with the yucca plants, that helped me deal with my grief”

Lee Francis, founder of Native Realities, launched his

comic book company in April of 2015 with the idea

that in order to change the stereotypical

representations of Native people, one had to start

with pop culture. The Indigenous Comic Con grew out

of the efforts of Native Realities and is a three-day

celebration of all things Native and Indigenous pop

culture. “The response has been overwhelming!

There are so many Indigenerds out there and we are

glad to have them at the Con!” Lee shared. The

superheroes and comics form and concept will

display builds on a long tradition of Native comics.

One of the artists on display, Arigon Starr (Kickapoo),

is the creator of the Super Indian comic series. Super

Indian was originally produced as a nationally

broadcast radio comedy series in 2007 and became a

webcomic that debuted in 2011. “I modeled him after

the classic Batman TV show from the 1960s with

Adam West and Burt Ward”, Starr says. “Most

hardcore comic book people dismiss that series, but it

really influenced my storytelling. So often Native folks

are never shown having a sense of humor and being

funny is important to my work. There is a lot of social

consciousness evident in Super Indian, but disguised

in humor. You can look at it as satire or parody – but underneath the yuks, it’s great to explore

issues of identity, community and how Native folks are perceived.”

The Zuni Pueblo project is borne of an ArtPlace-funded grant that includes a partnership of the

Indigenous Design and Planning Institute (iD+Pi) at UNM, Creative Startups, and multiple tribal

entities in Zuni Pueblo. Dr. Ted Jojola, founder of iD+Pi initiated the program and sees that

culturally appropriate design and planning develops creative communities. The project’s goal is

to build a thriving creative community in Zuni that increases incomes and reflects Pueblo-driven

community design. “Native communities are rich in creativity and culture. Community planning

that reflects this richness can help drive economic development - and creative entrepreneurs

are at the heart of this work” reflects Alice Loy, a co-founder of Creative Startups. ArtPlace

America is funding the UNM Indigenous Design and Planning Institute, Creative Startups, and

multiple partners in Zuni Pueblo.

What/ Who​: Native Realities: Superheroes of Past, Present, and Future

When​: Friday, November 11, 5:00 – 7:00 pm through December 31, 2016

Artist Talks scheduled for November 12, 2pm

Where​: form & concept, 435 S. Guadalupe St. Santa Fe, NM 87501

For more information and high resolution images, contact:

Jordan Eddy,, 505.982.8111 x1008