Lisa Fruichantie

Tribe: Seminole / Mvskoke-Creek
Based In: Tacoma, WA

About the Art
AKVNCYPV (ah-kuhn-juh-buh) is a mvskoke word meaning a place in this direction that is lower than another.

AKVNCYPV is a sewn tapestry installation designed to view in four different perspectives starting with the top construction of the sewn piece while also including the invitation to view the chaotic and frayed looking backside in addition to the ceiling and floor views. The free-floating 4’x4’ cotton tapestry includes two sewn pockets to create a suspended display which allows the viewer to move around both the front and the backside of the piece. Shown as a welcoming tapestry, AKVNCYPV playfully allows the viewer to see the constructed final design as well as the collaboration of many stitches and fabric pieced, cut and re-woven together in order to create a beautiful final display. AKVNCYPV is primarily constructed using Seminole patchwork design inspired by the colors (red, yellow, white & black) of the generational teachings of the Native medicine wheel. Using Seminole design symbols that reference the sky and the earth creates vibrant color bands which additionally reference sacred medicines that correlate to specific color directions within the medicine wheel; Cedar, Sweetgrass, Tobacco and Sage. This installation pays tribute to the individuals that taught the younger generations before us and through us, their teachings continue to be revitalized and taught to the next.

About the Artist
My art merges traditional Seminole/Creek Patchwork design with other aspects of my heritage, my lust for texture, and influential cultures surrounding and shaping me growing up. Being raised in Alaska was wonderful however my own culture and family felt very removed from me growing up. My family became those chosen by me. Social activism, fringe music scenes, and underground art movements became my social outlet. As an adult I have had the privilege to embrace my own culture and find balance between the influences that shaped me and the roots of my heritage. Reuniting with my family, my own tribe - especially through art, dance, music and language - has healed my sense of belonging. My art work now finds that balance in nodding to tradition, cultivating the new and being content with the current. Designs carried out through blends of new fabric, patterns, textiles and hemlines, all the while keep the precision and the delicate intricacies of patchwork tradition in the forefront.