Event - Tactile Conversations: No Word for Art in our Language*: Artmaking Workshop with Tohanash Tarrant and Dennis RedMoon Darkeem

Tactile Conversations: No Word for Art in our Language*: Artmaking Workshop with Tohanash Tarrant and Dennis RedMoon Darkeem

05.05.24, 2:00 pm – 4:30 pm

An image of hanging quilted flags in abstract patterns, on the left a photograph of a boy's fancy dance regalia.

Image credits: left: courtesy of Dennis RedMoon Darkeem, right: courtesy of Tohanash Tarrant.

The Queens Museum is pleased to present the second workshop as part of Tactile conversations: No Word for Art in our Language*, a series that investigates practices of tactile making as ways of knowing and being in local Native and diasporic Indigenous practices. During each workshop of this series, two artists from different Indigenous backgrounds are invited to lead concurrent drop-in artmaking activities where the materials and methods of making are in dialogue with one another. The public is invited to participate and experience a range of techniques for working by hand, while fostering informal conversation and exchange across Indigenous practices, languages, and forms of knowledge.



Please join us May 5th for a workshop featuring conversation and artmaking activities by Tohanash Tarrant and Dennis RedMoon Darkeem.


Registration is required. Please click here to RSVP.


*The title of this series is referencing No Word for Art in Our Language? Old Questions, New Paradigms by Nancy Marie Mithlo


About the workshop: 


Tohanash Tarrant will lead a workshop on making appliqué medallions. Appliqué made from cloth and careful stitching is an art form passed down through generations and often used in regalia making. Tohanash will offer participants the opportunity to work with vibrant color and pattern to make cloth medallions that represent their connections to family, culture, and the world around us by sharing the appliqué techniques of her Ho-Chunk family and techniques she has created on her own.


Dennis RedMoon Darkeem will lead a workshop where we’ll delve into the cultural significance of themes inspired by the medicine wheel, Seminole patchwork, and storytelling. Participants will craft personal cultural objects using collage of natural elements, everyday items, and recycled art supplies. These creations will serve as a tangible exploration of one’s identity, culture, and sense of place, fostering family and personal connections. This workshop encourages participants to connect with their roots and craft a lasting memory.


This series is part of The Indigenous Practice Studio (IPS), an initiative that is currently in development at the Queens Museum in partnership with artist and cultural consultant Tecumseh Ceaser. The Indigenous Practice Studio is an experimental program consisting of long-term research, continued learning, programming, and consultation and relationship building with local Native and diasporic Indigenous communities. The Queens Museum acknowledges its occupancy of unceded Indigenous lands and builds towards restorative and non-extractive ways of working with Indigenous artists and communities. IPS reflects the Queens Museum’s ongoing commitment to self-interrogation and recognizes its work as unfinished, with this effort as a starting point.

About the Artists

Tohanash Tarrant is a member of the Thunderbird clan of the Shinnecock Indian Nation. She is a beadwork/ribbonwork/appliqué artist, dancer, and teacher. Born and raised in the Shinnecock Indian Territory, Tohanash learned the art of beadwork from her mother and other Shinnecock elders. Attending and dancing at powwows throughout the summers, gave her inspiration to create her dance regalia and regalia for other tribal members. Tohanash’s Indigenous cultures span several nations. Her father’s family comes from the Hopi and Ho-Chunk Nations of Arizona and Nebraska. They were survivors of the Carlisle Indian Industrial School. Once graduated, they resettled into a community of Indigenous Peoples within the New York City limits during the 1940s and 1950s. As a contemporary women’s shawl dancer, Tohanash has an eye for vibrant colors and modern materials. She incorporates the appliqué techniques of her Ho-Chunk family as well as creating her own. Her children continue the tradition of dancing and are learning to make their regalia. Her beadwork is featured in the New York State Museum of Albany.


Dennis RedMoon Darkeem is Bronx-born and raised artist and art educator. He is of Yamassee Creek-Seminole Native American and African American descent. Dennis has over 10 years of experience working in the DOE, private and charter schools in the South Bronx and Harlem. He received his Bachelor’s in Fine Arts and his Master’s in Art Direction from the Pratt Institute. Darkeem is inspired to create artwork based on the familiar objects that he views through his daily travels. Much of his art has focused on issues like institutionalized racism and classism, jarring stereotypes, and displacement of people of color.