The Evergreen State College Longhouse Awarded $575,000 for ‘Northwest Native Heritage Project’

April 4, 2012

The Northwest Native Heritage project, with new funding from Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, will help to promote Native arts in the Pacific Northwest through a series of artist residencies, workshops and exhibitions designed to build the infrastructure for sharing artistic and cultural knowledge across generations.

“This project, proposed by our Longhouse at Evergreen, provides crucial support to Native artists in Washington and Oregon, helping them to participate in the economy on terms that are acceptable culturally and personally, and to present genuine stories from Native community perspectives,” says Tina Kuckkahn-Miller, director of the Longhouse Education and Cultural Center.

Funding will be used to support sharing of technical skills and cultural knowledge across generations, whether conveyed in visual, literary, or performance based forms, adds Kuckkahn-Miller. The funds solicited and received via The Evergreen State College Foundation will support specific projects including awards of grants, juried art shows and exhibitions, public awareness building efforts, and museum and reservation based workshops.

“We appreciate this grant as it helps us return to our roots, ” says Kuckkahn-Miller. “The Longhouse was established as a bridge between Evergreen and tribal communities, both urban and rural. We will be working specifically with tribes in Oregon and Washington, and we will build upon decades-long partnerships set in motion among Evergreen and the surrounding Northwest tribes since 1972.”

“The grant also represents continuing, positive interest in the real vitality in Northwest Native societies,” adds Kuckkahn-Miller.

Planning for the first projects will begin this spring and grant funding is meant to support projects through March 2015.

The "House of Welcome" Longhouse Education and Cultural Center is a public service center at The Evergreen State College. Built in collaboration with Northwest tribes, it is the first building of its kind on a public campus in the United States. The Longhouse is a multi-purpose facility, able to serve a variety of educational, cultural and community functions. Founded upon a vision of hospitality and service, it is a gathering place for people of all cultural backgrounds to teach and learn with each other. The Longhouse's public service mission is to promote indigenous arts and cultures through education, cultural preservation, creative expression and economic development.