The Long Conversation:
Dyani White Hawk & Jovan C. Speller

Listen on:
Apple / Spotify / Amazon / Google / YouTube
Sticher / TuneIn


Video Selections:

On their collaboration in Choosing Home: A Right, A Privilege, An Act of Tresspass at the Walker Art Center

Jovan C. Speller’s work on memory, myth, and family history in rural North Carolina

Dyani White Hawk and the presence of language, land, and history in LISTEN

Additional Resources:

Artist sites for Dyani White Hawk and Jovan C. Speller

Video clips from the Braids video collaboration and Dyani White Hawk’s LISTEN

Twin Cities Public Television video on Jovan C. Speller and the Choosing Home event

Dyani White Hawk’s She Gives exhibition at Plains Art Museum

5 Plain Questions podcast with Dyani White Hawk

We are grateful to share Dyani White Hawk and Jovan C. Speller taking part in a podcast format we are calling The Long Conversation -- one that offers folks the chance to cultivate a thread of ideas and relationships without the presence of an interviewer

This was an experiment, one born from a desire to share with a wider audience what might happen when these two friends and collaborators had the space to relax into a conversation about life, art, family, land, and whichever topics and contexts emerged through that flow. This conversation was recorded over Zoom in late summer 2021, as both artists created work in their studios. 

In the time that transpires here, we hear both artists at a point of transition between exhibitions -- with major projects ahead -- reflecting on how the central presence of Black and Native women help us understand the dimensions of the cultural moment we all are walking through.

Their time together opens with the power of intergenerational knowledge in their collaborative work Choosing Home, and expands to consider Jovan’s time spent with relatives in rural North Carolina learning family history, and Dyani’s time with Native women across the continent who speak the languages of their people. Rooted in these experiences, the conversation asks how artists, institutions, and communities can better honor and more deeply support the cultural histories and lived experiences that animate these connections.

Land is a constant presence and relational force throughout, ground on which we’re left with a deeper understanding of these artists’ creative practice but also with a sense of the kind of futures we could all inhabit.

Dyani White Hawk (Sičáŋǧu Lakota) is a visual artist and independent curator based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Most recently, her work was included in the 2022 Whitney Biennial, and also presented as a major solo exhibition at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. Dyani also previously served as Gallery Director and Curator for the All My Relations Gallery in Minneapolis.

Jovan C. Speller is a multidisciplinary artist based in Minnesota. She has received a McKnight Visual Artist Fellowship and the Carolyn Glasoe Bailey Foundation Minnesota Art Prize. Her installation In Lottie’s Living Room was featured in the High Visibility Exhibtion at the Plains Art Museum, and her exhibition Nurturing, and Other Rituals of Protection was recently presented by the Minneapolis Institute of Art.

Deep thanks to Dyani and Jovan for their time and vision, and to the National Endowment for the Arts and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts for their support.
High Visibility is a longterm, collaborative partnership between Art of the Rural, Plains Art Museum, and individuals & organizations across the continent. Please feel welcome to join us in this work.