Natalie was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Ethnic Studies from the University of Oregon and she furthered her education in New Zealand at Massey University where she attained her Master’s degree in Maori Visual Arts. Natalie currently resides with her three children on the Klamath Tribes’ former reservation.
Natalie is an indigenous artist who examines internal and external discourses that shape Indian identity through contemporary art. She believes historical discourses of Native Americans have constructed a limited and inconsistent visual archive that currently misrepresents our past experiences and misinforms current expectations. She excavates hidden histories, and dominant narratives to deconstruct them through a theoretical framework of auto-ethnography. Her goal is to move “Indian” outside of governing discourses in order to rebuild a new visual genealogy that refuses to line-up with the many constructed existences of Native Americans.
Because auto-ethnography refers to the self, Natalie’s location as a descendent of African slaves, an English US soldier, and a descendant of Kintpaush, also known as Captain Jack who led Modoc resistance during the Modoc War of 1872 informs her work. Within the thematic focus of her work and her descendancy, it is here where her artistic approach and interest lies. Her work is always in discussion with racial narratives critical to understanding both the self and the nation and necessarily, our shared experiences and histories.