Films & Installations
Feast of Beams (2019-2020)
Sound Artist Carmina Escobar was invited into residency by Indexical to create a public performance at the Santa Cruz Lighthouse, designed by Carmina with the following in mind: 'At the heart of the headland a pole irradiates invisible beacons that tread the path to each other to experience the thresholds of our complex human relationships. Feast of Beams, Keepers of Light is a communal performance that explores the dynamic nature of our narratives through performances at land, water, and air. Working with diverse groups that form the Santa Cruz community-at-large, bring together their different points of experience and perception, the project seeks to start an inner dialogue with each of the groups for the development of a piece to take place on August 10th at the Lighthouse Field State Beach.' Invited commissioned collaboration with the Amah Mutsun Tribal community and interpret into a coastal wood and shell-sculpture a center point of reference for the Feast of Beams, Keepers of Light performance.
Talking Roots, Trees of Witness (2022)
Filmed over a two-year period during the height of the COVID pandemic as the Montalvo began rethinking its connection to the local Ohlone community, working in conjunction with the Confederation of Ohlone People to craft a serious of gatherings with Montalvo staff and a team of Bandaloop trainers, lead by the troupe's founder, Amelia Rudulph, collaborated to create a dance performance high-above in the trees, for a public presentation on the last day of the residency, edited together with participant photos and videos taken during a week-long residency featuring speakers from the Amah Mutsun Land Stewardship and Save the Redwoods among other examples of successful Native science and ecology practices of thousands of generations.
Mother's Nature of Creating (2011) - Video Installation
A review by Chriselda Pacheco wrote: 'Filmmaker and photographer Catherine Herrera shared her vision through video. Her piece entitled, 'Mother's Nature of Creating' is particularly nuanced. A wet lily shot at different still video frames keeps the onlooker staring at what would normally be just another flower. But, the intense close-ups and pauses make you consider what else it could be. It forces you to see the constant and consistent design in creation and how it ultimately is linked to the feminine and her ability to create. Its is a visual metaphore for the delicacy and raw beauty of life.
Kim Shuck & Michael Horse at the de Young Museum (2012)
Featuring San Francisco's Poet Laureate Kim Shuck and Ledger Artist Michael Horse who exhibited together at the de Young Museum, with Catherine Herrera receiving a commission to film, produce and edit a series of short documentaries commissioned highlighting a year of art presentations developed by the museum in collaboration with San Francisco communities rarely featured or made accessible, during a time of expanding consciousness and efforts by museums across the country and world to reckon with colonial collecting past. Documented the unique- for-the-time Native American Programming Council, formed to reverse years of tensions resulting from dated practices of exclusion and misattributions/misunderstandings of collection items and history, with a special effort by the Museum to honor the original people, the Costanoan and other California Native tribes that shared the region.
de Young Museum commission to film, produce and edit a series of short documentaries commissioned highlighting a year of art presentations developed by the museum in collaboration with San Francisco communities rarely featured or made accessible, during a time of expanding consciousness and efforts by museums across the country and world to reckon with a colonial collecting past. Documented the unique-for-the-time Native American Programming Council, formed to reverse years of tensions resulting from dated practices of exclusion and misattributions/misunderstandings of collection items and history, with a special effort by the Museum to honor the original people, the Costanoan and other California Native tribes that shared the region.
Open Doors to a Healing (2012)
A pair of earphones invite visitors to slip into a world so often described by anthropologists – during that time in the field and often, still – as in the past, audiences could hear the stories of descendants seeking to restore their documentation for California Native and Native ancestors and the impact of 'paper genocide' and post-colonial trauma as well as to highlight the incredible resiliency of Costanoan people in the face of genocidal policies in California.
Sitting Ohlone (2015) - Public Art Performance resulting in Photo & Video Installation for Exhibit
'Sitting Ohlone' plays homage to the 1970's seminal performance of Bonnie Ora Sherk's performance 'Sitting Still I-III,' designed to bring attention to the inter-connectedness of humans and the environment which resulted in the creation of the 'Farm,' a participatory farm featuring human co-existence and sustainability. 'Sitting Ohlone' highlights the lack of representation of Costanoan people, and derogatory statutes and visual representations of Native Americans, following the Director Catherine Herrera as she visits the Board of Supervisors to propose a San Francisco Costanoan & Native American Museum and Cultural Center that could enrich the Bay Area and for visitors around the world.
Dr. T & the Blues Criminals feat. Dr. Loco for Native American Blues Society (2012)
Legend Dr. Loco and stellar Native group Dr. T and the Blues Criminals are featured in this performance at the famous Brava Theater in San Francisco's Mission District, in support of the Native American Blues Society.
Girls on a Mission (2009)
Josafina Lopez' was commissioned in 2009 to offer a screenwriting workshop for adults, and, a writing workshop for teen Latinas living in San Francisco's Mission District rich in powerful murals from artists of international to local fame, restaurants representing the culinary wealth of Latin America, and a hub of cutting edge creative production in the City. Josafina Lopez workshops with the teens who create writing reflecting their lives, challenges and resiliency.
Martins Beach (2024)
Martins Beach explores the value of coastal public access in this documentary that launches from the closure of a much beloved beach south of San Francisco, the director Catherine Herrera learning of the gate when she took the next generation of her family there as she had been as a kid and during her life, each year gaining more and more knowledge of the coast, the ocean, sea life, and how to successfully co-exist. When she learns that the new owner violated California Coastal regulations to close out the public, Catherine documents the unfolding legal fight waged by the various communities that counted Martins Beach as a sacred responsibility for future generations. Along the way, Catherine turns to California Native communities involved in coastal stewardship, based on thousands of generations of Native science and coastal management supporting their partnerships with state, federal, and local agencies, conservation groups, and landowners working in sync to restore and sustain California’s valuable and unique coastal environment currently facing dire challenges without innovative action.
Bridge Walkers (2012)
Bridge Walkers is a short documentary featuring the Honorable Chairwoman Ann Marie Sayers, Amah Mutsun Indian Canyon, Cultural Bearer & Elder, Sacred Site Preservation Advocate; Corrina Gould, Lisjan Ohlone Confederation and Sacred Site Preservation Activist and L. Frank Manriquez, Tongva-Ajachmem Achimen & Tongva Artist, Writer, Tribal Scholar, Cartoonist and Indigenous Language Activist. The short film was the center screen in a 3-screen installation featuring two screens of moving images of sacred sites in Mexico, such as Tula & Teotihucan, where today cultural knowledge is transmitted and honored, and Costanoan sacred sites in the S.F. Bay Area, destroyed and paved over as erasure along with history. Since the film's creation, and numerous films on the contemporary Costanoan Ohlone peoples, changes have been made, as well as a great deal remains to be done.
Witness the Healing (2007)
Director Catherine Herrera was like any American teenager, except where ever she went, people asked her 'what are you? what is your heritage?' At 17, Catherine had begun to ask questions of her father and mother as she started to answer those questions herself, feeling sure in the indigenous belief that one can not know where one is headed without knowing from where one comes. This film was made early in the process upon returning from working in Mexico City and was self-financed. At the release of the film in 2007, the Costanoan community was in a new phase of cultural revitalization and other families returning to recover their families from paper genocide.