Cannupa Hanska Luger in 2019 Photo by Brendan George Ko

Mountain Pottery will be hosting an event to create clay beads to represent each of the 7,209 deaths that have occurred in the last 20 years among migrants crossing the southwestern border of the United States.
The beads will be incorporated into a work of art made by Cannupa Hanska Luger at the Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum in Mesa, Arizona, according to the press release.
With a bachelor’s in studio arts from the Institute of American Indian Arts, Luger’s education and talent has provided vast opportunities and collaborations in multidisciplinary arts.
To name a few of his achievements, Luger was a recipient of the 2019 Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters and Sculptors Grant, a 2019 Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Honoree and the recipient of the Museum of Arts and Design’s 2018 inaugural Burke Prize.
Tiffany Fairall, chief curator of the Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum in Mesa, Arizona, and Colette Pecenka, curator of exhibitions and education, are leading the workshop.
“I know Idyllwild is a community that cares and is full of people that care,” said Helen Hixon, Mountain Pottery owner. “It gives everyone an opportunity for free to come make a bead and to have their handprint in this installation. It’s making something beautiful out of something tragic.”
The art installation is called “Something To Hold Onto.” The goal will be to rehumanize the large and abstract data with the creation of these handmade items. These beads won’t be fired, meaning they will eventually disintegrate back into the earth bringing the process full circle and raising awareness of those lives lost.
“This is just one way to give back to our community, and our community contributing to this amazing international collaboration that will be installed in Mesa, Arizona,” Hixon said.
This free event will be held on Saturday, Feb. 22 at Mountain Pottery, 54716 N. Circle Dr. Fairall will be hosting multiple presentations between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and will be available to help those who want to participate.