Perhaps, opposing worldviews will converge to create a new balance in the universe!

Reposted from Janet Webb, Beyondtaos.com
Taos, NM, April 2017

“Lakota Cosmology Meets Particle Physics” is a youth workshop at Taos Integrated School for the Arts (TISA) organized by their new STEAM Lab@TISA coordinator, artist-educator, Agnes Chavez. On Monday, April 10, students from Megan Bowers Avina’s TISA classroom will spend the morning with Dr. Steven Goldfarb (CERN Physicist) and Steve Tamayo (Lakota Cultural Specialist and Water Protector) exploring the mystery of Dark Matter through the lens of two worldviews. Megan explains, “Agnes and I have been working with the TISA students for weeks preparing them with creative activities on Dark Matter and native science-western science worldviews. The kids are incredibly talented, compassionate, and have developed insight on the possibilities of what makes up Dark Matter, even impressing the scientist from CERN with their theories.”

The two-day workshop is part of the Projecting Particles Project, introduced during The PASEO 2014 – which also included a virtual collaboration with Dr. Goldfarb and the ATLAS Experiment at CERN. Now Dr. Goldfarb will appear in person to explain the Large Hadron Collider, the largest particle accelerator in the world, and how it is used to discover particles that are the key to our understanding of the universe. With Standing Rock water protector, Steve Tamayo, students will learn the indigenous way of using science to relate to the physical world. The students will participate in the building of a Lakota tipi as they hear metaphorical stories that share the cosmological observations of indigenous peoples. Guided by the research and wisdom of Dr. Cajete, the interdisciplinary team will encourage youth to imagine a new worldview that combines science, technological and life-sustaining ecology that is in balance with nature.

With artist Agnes Chavez, students will transfer their newly created stories into animated electronic graphics to be projected inside of the tipi, creating an installation that they will share with the community at a live performance on April 11. Chavez will be assisted by three Taos High School students, all of whom have participated in past Projecting Particles workshops where they learned the Tagtool animation tool from Paseo artist and Tagtool app developer, Markus Dorninger.

The public will be able view a video documenting “Lakota Cosmology Meets Particle Physics” in three different roundtable discussions  – in Taos, Espanola and Santa Fe.

Quick View:
April 10-11 – Lakota Cosmology Meets Particle Physics: Exploring Dark Matter
Youth Workshop for TISA students at Taos Youth and Family Center (limited press passes available)

April 11, 7:00 – 9:00pm – Live public viewing of student projection inside Lakota tipi
Taos Youth and Family Center, 407 Paseo del Cañon East, Taos

April 12, 6:00pm – Public Roundtable Discussion with Video of TISA workshop
Harwood Museum of Art, 238 Ledoux Street, Taos

April 13, noon-2:00pm – Public Roundtable Discussion with Video of TISA workshop
Northern New Mexico Community College, 2921 N Paseo de Onate, Española

April 13, 6:00pm – Public Roundtable Discussion with Video of TISA workshop
Biocultura, 1505 Agua Fria Street, Santa Fe

About the participants of “Lakota Cosmology Meets Particle Physics”

Dr. Steve Goldfarb is a physicist from the University of Melbourne, working on the ATLAS Experiment at CERN in Geneva Switzerland. He is active in education and outreach, is the webmaster for the ATLAS public web pages, co-chair of the International Particle Physics Outreach Group, on-site coordinator of the REU Summer Student and Research Semester Abroad programs for American undergraduates at CERN, and advisory board member for Quarknet.

Steve Tamayo is based in Omaha Nebraska. He draws upon his family history as a member of the Sicangu Lakota tribe. His fine arts education (BFA from Singe Gleska University) along with his cultural upbringing have shaped him as an artist, historian, storyteller and dancer. Steve provides activities during his residencies that include art and regalia making, drumming, powwow dance demonstrations and lectures on the history, symbolism and meaning behind the Native customs and traditions. Most recently Steve led workshops with kids at Standing Rock Oceti Sakowin Camp.

Dr. Greg Cajete is a Native American educator whose work is dedicated to honoring the foundations of indigenous knowledge in education. Dr. Cajete is a Tewa Indian from Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico. He has served as a New Mexico Humanities scholar in ethno botany of Northern New Mexico and as a member of the New Mexico Arts Commission. Dr. Cajete has authored five books: Look to the Mountain: An Ecology of Indigenous Education, (Kivaki Press, 1994); Ignite the Sparkle: An Indigenous Science Education Curriculum Model, (Kivaki Press, 1999); Spirit of the Game: Indigenous Wellsprings (2004) , A People’s Ecology: Explorations in Sustainable Living, and Native Science: Natural Laws of Interdependence (Clearlight Publishers, 1999 and 2000).

Agnes Chavez is a new media artist and educator and co-director of The Paseo, working at the intersection of art, science, technology and social practice. She partners with scientists and programmers to explore our relationship to nature and technology through data visualization, sound and projections. Her recent installation, Origination Point, visualized the origins of matter and the Higgs Field, informed by a research stay at the ATLAS Experiment at CERN in 2015. Agnes is Co-Director of The PASEO, the outdoor participatory arts festival which brings projection, performance and installation art to the streets of Taos, New Mexico. In 2009 she founded the STEMarts Lab, which empowers youth through STEAM workshops that integrate science, technology and new media arts through social practice.

Megan Bowers Avina Is a nationally award-winning photojournalist and artist who has lived in Taos for over 20 years. Avina is the Art’s Curriculum Coordinator at the Taos Integrated School of the Arts and fourth grade teacher. Avina strives to create a classroom atmosphere of real world issues to inspire her students to become critical thinkers and instruments of positive change in their community/world. Avina is a graduate of Parsons School of Design and is currently obtaining her Masters of Fine Arts at UNM. Avina is ecstatic to have joined forces with Chavez in bringing an amazing curriculum to the students at the Taos Integrated School of the Arts.

Thanks to sponsors TISA and a grant from the Martin Foundation, ATLAS Experiment at CERN, Harwood Museum of The Arts, Taos Youth and Family Center and Northern New Mexico Community College.