New Yorkers Try and Guess “Origin” of These Native American Models

Posted By Toyacoyah Brown October 20th, 2015 Last Updated on: October 15th, 2016

I can relate to this video whole-heartedly. Since I'm a city girl a lot of people assume I'm Mexican, Brazilian, Italian or some other variation on a theme. And then there are the uncomfortable times where someone is just staring at you trying to figure you out until they have the courage to blurt out, “Where are you from?” My usual response is, “Oh well, I'm not originally from Chicago, I used to live in Texas.” But I know what they really are asking. “No, what country are you from?” There's always a bit of a shock when I say, “Oh, I'm Native. Comanche. Have you heard of them?”

Photographer Matika Wilbur from Project 562 recently visited New York to see if New Yorkers could accurately guess a couple of Indigenous model's “origins”. How accurate do you think they'll be?

So hey, not too bad, a couple of people said Indigenous or Native. In a big city like New York where you can almost hear every language around the world spoken in the subway, it's nice to let people know that yes, Indigenous people are here, walking by you every day!

Thank you Matika for making this video and perhaps opening a few more eyes! We are still here and not just a page in the history books.

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About Toyacoyah Brown

Toyacoyah Brown is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation, currently living in Chicago. She received her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and an M.A. in Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. When she's not scouring the Internet for fun things to share with PowWows.com readers you can find her digging for vinyl in her local record store or curling up with a good book.

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Christine Masopust

This is great! I’ve met a lot of international friends because they thought I was international. I get Vietnamese a lot. I’m Comanche. Thank you for sharing.

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