As you might already know, Leonard Peltier has now spent four entire decades behind bars for a crime he has not committed. Even though, by most countries’ standards, he has now fulfilled both of the consecutive life-sentences to which he was wrongly sentenced, he remains behind bars.
Throughout his incarceration, many powerful national and international voices have raised their support for his case, including dozens of members of the United States Congress, Nobel Peace Prize laureates, Amnesty International, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and countless others. The injustice of his situation has been raised via national best-selling books, documentary films, paintings, posters, songs, petitions, walks, marches, protests, gatherings and prayers.
Currently there are several campaigns under way, united in their goal: to have President Obama grant a long overdue clemency to Leonard Peltier, thus allowing for a historical healing process to finally begin. Healing for Peltier himself, his family and the larger extended family of all the Indigenous Peoples living within the United States borders.
Only after this initial step of goodwill can the relationship between the United States Federal Government and the Indigenous Peoples living within its borders evolve past the painful standstill at which it’s stood. Native American youth suicide rates are the highest of any other cultural group in the United States.
Here are a few links of many:
Before Leonard joined the American Indian Movement, he applied twice to attend art school in Santa Fe, but got turned down. Even so, he has never stopped painting, despite all of the severe limitations he faces in prison.
The goal of this project is to honor Leonard Peltier as both a symbol of Native struggle for self-determination in North America and as a persevering artist. Leonard has never stopped inspiring others to resist and to work towards the betterment of all relations inhabiting this shared Earth.
Using Leonard’s most recent self-portrait as the blue print, artist Rigo 23 has set out to build a 9 foot tall statue which – once finished – will tour the United States raising awareness for the Clemency Campaign and Mr. Peltier’s long-overdue release from prison.
The multimedia sculpture will be made so that it can be taken apart and reassembled for ease of travel and exhibition. The feet, arms and face will be carved out of redwood and the body will be covered in water resistant epoxy resin. All parts will be sustained by a steel structure running inside the hollow torso and legs.
Our goal is to complete the sculpture by early December 2016 when it will then travel across country to arrive at the Katzen Arts Center in Washington D.C. to be dedicated on December 9 as part of Leonard Peltier week. To accomplish this we need to raise $40,000. As of November, we are half-way at our goal, and the sculpture itself is more than half complete. There is only one outcome–to ensure its successful arrival to Washington D.C. Given the vast number of people the world over that care for Leonard Peltier, we are confident we’ll be able to complete our goal with your help.
We ask that you share this page with your circle of acquaintances and consider contributing to this effort by:
PDF/Leonard Peltier Statue Project
P.O. Box 40250
San Francisco, CA 94140-0250
Lenard Foster – Mr. Peltier Spiritual Advisor
Tony Gonzales – American Indian Movement – West, Director
Rigo 23 -Visual artist, creator of the Tommie Smith and John Carlos sculpture at San José State University
This project is endorsed by: American Indian Movement (AIM) ,ANIS – Associacion Nacional Indigenas Salvadoreños, Flying Eagle Woman Fund, Indigenous Women’s Life Net, and Seventh Generation Fund for Indigenous Peoples.
Click here to contact us.