About The Wanapum
The Wanapum live on the Columbia River; it has been their home from time immemorial. Wanapum means River People. They believe they were put there to protect and preserve the land and river for themselves, their children, and those not yet born. As spiritual people, the Wanapum continue to practice their religion. Friendly, understanding, and respectful of all people and things, the Wanapum only wish to live in peace. Through strenuous and prudent efforts, the Wanapum have successfully built relationships with federal, state, and local agencies. The respect, trust, and mutual understanding that results from these relationships allow the Wanapum to actively participate in decision-making processes that affect their responsibilities to care for the creator.
NEW hours starting July 1
Mon, Thur, Fri | 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Tues, Wed | CLOSED
Sat, Sun | 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
OUR SPECIAL EXHIBIT
July 15, 2023-October 15, 2023
Portraits in Red: Missing & Murdered Indigenous People Painting Project
“I want to paint them the way the spirits would see them.” – Nayana LaFond
Artist's statement: I began this painting project without the intention of it becoming a project at all. I intended to make one painting as a catharsis and tribute to a domestic violence survivor and my matrilineal line.
The response to the first painting was so strong I decided to paint another. This began on May 5, 2020 when I was in quarantine and looking for something to occupy my time.
After an even larger online response to the second portrait, I decided to tell people that if they send me their images, I would paint them to raise awareness about the crisis. Within the first day I received 25 emails and private messages with images and stories. I soon figured out that I needed to paint them all. I could not say yes to some and say no to others. As of September 2022 I have completed 90 works and have a constant queue of 30 or more at a time. I paint them all for free, and I provide unlimited free prints to the families while exhibiting the originals to raise awareness. Because of so many messages and requests coming in, I declared it to be a project – the MMIWG/P Painting project began.
Each portrait is painted in black and white with red being the only visible color because spirits can only see red. Through painting these people I seek to elevate their voices, promote healing and spark discussion while contributing toward change. Each painting brings me healing from my own experiences and the experiences of my family members and I hope it brings some healing to those I paint and their families.
I also hope to raise awareness about this issue through exhibiting the work. Eventually if I do make the work available for sale I will donate to various charities including the NIWRC (National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center).
Nayana LaFond is of Anishinaabe, Mi’kmaq, Abenaki, Metis, French, German and other descent and is very active in her indigenous community.