Visual Artist and Activist
Gregg Deal, Pyramid Lake Paiute, is an artist and activist whose work deals with "Indigenous identity and pop culture, touching on issues of race relations, historical consideration and stereotype"
He and his family lived in the Washington, DC area for 17 years before moving to their current place of residence, Colorado Springs, CO. He resides there with his wife and five children.
Career & Artwork
Deal lived and worked as a graphic designer then self-employed artist in the Washington, D.C. area for 16 years. After moving to Denver, CO, the Denver Art Museum hosted Deal as a Native Arts Artist-in-Residence. Currently, Deal is an Artist-in-Residence at UC Berkeley for the 2017-2018 school year.
· Existence as Protest, 2017 (Redline Gallery, Milwaukee, WI)
· Supreme Law of the Land, 2017 (Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO)
· There is No Plan B, 2016 (The Fridge, Washington, D.C.)
· White Indian, 2016 (Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO)
· This Is Indian Land, 2015 (Art Mart, Fredericksburg, VA)
· Pan-Indian Romantic Comedy, 2015 (Wooly Mammoth, Washington, D.C.)
· REDSKIN, 2014 (Art All Night: Nuit Blanche, Washington, D.C.)
· Romantic Nationalism, 2014 (The Dunes, Washington, D.C.)
· Art Crimes, 2013 (The Dunes, Washington, D.C.)
· From the Street to The Studio: The Work of Gregg Deal, 2012 (Capital One, McLean, VA)
· Faces in The Crowd, 2012 (Foundation Gallery & Liveroom, Kensington, MD)
· Popmatic, 2010 (Sukio, Washington, D.C.)
· People, 2004 (Common Ground, Washington, D.C.)
Deal’s activism exists in his art, as well as his participation in political movements. He has been heavily involved with the #changethename movement, appearing on an episode of Totally Biased with Kamau Bell as well as The Daily Show with John Stewart. He created a #changethename video on Vimeo to invite Indigenous people to weigh in on the mascot issue in response to what he perceived as mainstream media’s failure to include Indigenous voices within the discussion.
Inspiration / Influences
Gregg Deal cites James Luna, a Payómkawichum(Luiseño) as one of his main influences. After winning a mentorship with the Ford Foundation, Deal accompanied Luna to the Venice Biennale, where he assisted Luna for his performance piece "Emendatio" for two weeks. Afterwards, Deal developed the concept of The Last American Indian on Earth.
Deal draws inspiration from various street artists; he cites Washington local artists 181HKS, Ultra, Con and Maz Paz in an interview with Aljazeera, as well as national artists GIANT, REVOK, TWIST and Shepard Fairey. Deal also mentions several Indigenous artists that inspire him: Jaque Fraqua, Ernesto Yerena, Nani Chacon, Cheyenne Randall and Jared Yazzie.