An augmented reality series in Dallas is honoring indigenous culture for Native American Heritage Month. The series can be enjoyed for free, according to a City of Dallas press release, at multiple sites, including Carpenter Park, the Dallas Museum of Art, West End Square Park, and the AT&T Discovery District.
The installation is called Ha Įlè and was established through a partnership with the City of Dallas Office of Arts and Culture and the Consulate General of Canada.
“Ha Įlè is a virtual installation of augmented reality sculptures that honor traditional Indigenous symbols of North America and draw inspiration from the Indigenous cave paintings and petroglyphs found in the Pecos valley of Texas,” the press release shares.
This name is in the Tlicho language, and it means ‘future and past tense.’ A QR code is used to allow visitors to experience the visuals.
“The public can experience the artwork by scanning a QR code (anchor) that will seamlessly transport them to an interface where they can view and engage with the augmented reality sculpture directly through their smartphone camera,” the press release explains of the exhibit. “The art can be further explored as the user physically moves around the anchor. Users can take interactive photos and video[s] with art to enjoy and share.”
The art was created by Casey Koyczan, an artist from Dene First Nations, and Eric Wagliardo, an artist from Dallas. Inspiration for some of the art pieces came from cave paintings dating back to 1700 B.C. to 600 A.D.
An interactive hummingbird is showcased on all three sculptures being displayed, the press release states. This represents beauty, joy, and love in various native cultures.
The Dene language is widely spoken in various regions of the world, including British Columbia, Alaska, Northern California, Alberta, Northern Mexico, and parts of Oregon.
“The project partners and artists hope that by interacting with Ha Įlè, the public will be compelled to reflect on the unique histories, cultures, languages, and traditions that Indigenous people bring to communities across the United States and Canada,” the press release shares.
It combines the perspectives of both artists as they created work to honor Native American Heritage Month.
The maintenance and acquisition of public art in Dallas are managed by the City of Dallas Office of Arts and Culture’s Public Art Program, according to the press release. Art comes from regional and local artists and is displayed in various parts of the city. Dallas public art can be enjoyed in recreation centers, parks, libraries, fire stations, and more.
“The Public Art Program works to make Dallas a vibrant place in which to live and work, and a great place to visit,” according to the City of Dallas.
For over 50 years, the Consulate General of Canada in Dallas has been operating in downtown Dallas. The organization looks over relations between Canada and the states of Arkansas, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana. The Government of Canada has actively promoted Indigenous arts as a vehicle for the maintenance and transmission of culture.
The series opened on November 1 and runs until early January 2023.