Gregg Castro standing in front of the Golden Gate Bridge

Gregg Castro (T’rowt’raahl Salinan, Rumsien and Ramaytush Ohlone), culture director, Association of Ramaytush Ohlone. Photograph by Kirti Bassendine

Contemporary Indigenous Voices of California’s South Coast Range

This exhibition of portraits by Kirti Bassendine (b. 1962) features Indigenous community members from the South Coast Range: the San Francisco peninsula through the Santa Cruz mountains, Monterey Bay, and lower Salinan Valley. Bassendine’s photographs are accompanied by powerful personal statements from Native community members calling attention to cultural connections to the land, rematriation (restoring the relationship between Indigenous people and their ancestral land), and climate change. As an artist, Bassendine has always been intrigued by human relationships — especially how they impact the discovery of identity and belonging within one’s culture and the wider world. By bringing so many Indigenous voices together, she creates a unique experience for audiences to engage with these ideas themselves.

In the news

  • To bring together so many tribal leaders and cultural leaders in this area, it really hasn’t been done in this way before.

    Natalia Gurevich, San Francisco Examiner
  • An incredible opportunity for everyone to hear from community members in their own words.

    J.L. Odom, SFGate
  • Unique perspective[s] and urgent warnings about climate change are captured in both moving pictures and still portraits.

    Dan Ashley and Tim Didion, ABC7 News


Talks + conversations

Trees, land, and water

A Conversation on Caretaking, Gathering, and Tending the Land

Listen to a conversation featuring artists, cultural leaders, and elders from the Association of Ramaytush Ohlone Tribal Community, Rumsen Ohlone Tribal Community, and Amah Mutsun Tribal Band.

Exhibition organization

Organized in consultation with the Association of Ramaytush Ohlone, and in collaboration with the Confederated Villages of Lisjan, Muwekma Ohlone Tribe of the San Francisco Bay Area, Tamien Nation, Indian Canyon Chualar Tribe of the Costanoan-Ohlone People, Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, the Rumsen Ohlone Tribal Community, Esselen Tribe of Monterey County, the Salinan Tribe of San Luis Obispo and Monterey Counties, and the Salinan T'rowt'raahl tribal community.


Supported and partly funded by California Humanities

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Currently on view