Artwork Update — Acknowledge + Listen: Undoing Colonial Design in Massachusetts

20, Jul, 2023

We’re deeply troubled and disappointed to share that one of our public artworks, Acknowledge + Listen: Undoing Colonial Design in Massachusetts (2022), was recently damaged through an instance of vandalism. 

This artwork, which was developed collaboratively by students, Native advisors and community members, remains important to public education efforts around Native presence and vitality in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Boston’s obligations to Native communities.

Regardless of intent, these actions are a clear affront to the shared values and commitments of our organizations. 

We take this as an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the values embodied by this long-term collaborative project, as a reconfirmation of the importance of centering Native and Indigenous voices and artists through art and expression in the public realm, and also as a reminder of the urgency of our continued work together.

While the physical installation was damaged and temporarily removed from public display, we encourage everyone to engage with the related digital content, Beyond the Flag. Additionally, information on related policy advocacy efforts can be found here.

We’re grateful for the ongoing partnership of collaboration and care between Lesley University’s College of Art + Design, the North American Indian Center of Boston, and the Greenway Conservancy, as well as the time and energy of students, elders, and community advisors whose effort and vision made the artwork possible.

Acknowledge + Listen will be re-installed on The Greenway in September 2023.

Raquel Halsey, Executive Director, Native American Indian Center of Boston

Jean-Luc Pierite, President, Board of Directors, Native American Indian Center of Boston

Katherine Shozawa, Director of Community Engagement, College of Art + Design, Lesley University

Audrey Lopez, Director and Curator of Public Art, Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy