Another example of the power of artistic projection to bring peoples together was the Thanksgiving projection commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Occupation of Alcatraz Island in 1969 by native activists. This project was timed as a commemoration for Native American presence at Alcatraz Island in 1969. The Coit Tower commemorative video projection in 2009, allowed the audience, namely Native Americans and the general public, to have an opportunity to think more closely about the cultural context surrounding the Native American action that took place on Alcatraz in 1969.
This project, under the auspices of San Francisco Recreation and Parks was a very public event with the opportunity to inspire, build community and most importantly, heal rifts and divisions in the social and political fabric of our community. This projection brought together the First Peoples of the Bay Area, together with Indians of many other tribes, was a striking and dramatic tribute to courage and struggle. Using the structure of Coit Tower, illuminated by video projectors from 3 sides, with films recalling the Native action as well as honoring the local native Ohlone community. Early on the morning of thanksgiving, as people departed from the piers, on their way to Alcatraz, many thousands were able to view images and video recalling the events of 1969. Through video and live radio broadcast, some of the key members of the original participants were able to recall this watershed moment.
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