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 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.
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 be exhibited at the Katzen Arts Center of American University in Washington D.C., raising awareness for the Clemency Campaign and Mr. Peltier’s long-overdue release from prison. The statue will be dedicated on December 9, 2016 during the 2016 Human Rights Week. Full schedule of events can be seen here.
Artist Rigo 23
A graduate of the San Francisco Art Institute (BFA) and Stanford University (MFA), Rigo has been exhibiting work for over 20 years internationally and locally. He has had solo exhibitions at the Museo de Art Contemporanea in Brazil, Artists Space in New York, Museum of Contemporary Art in Santiago, Chile, The DeYoung Museum,Paule Anglim Gallery in San Francisco. He has participated in the California Biennial at the Orange County Museum, the 2006 Liverpool Biennial; the Liverpool Biennial, and has been featured in a wealth of group exhibitions including The SFMOMA, The Berkeley Art Museum, and the Pasadena Museum of Art.
Rigo has been awarded public commissions from the San Francisco International Airport, the Gerbode Foundation and the San Francisco Arts Commission, as well as permanent murals and terrazzo walks in Portugal. In October of 2005, a commissioned outdoor sculpture was dedicated on the campus of San Jose State University. Rigo depicted the two 1968 Olympic athletes, Tommie Smith and Juan Carlos in a larger-than-life version of their fisted salute.