Courtesy CRYP
Lakota dancers in CRYP's Waniyetu Wowapi (Winter Count) Art Park

Cheyenne River Youth Project Hosting Annual ‘RedCan Graffiti Jam’

Vincent Schilling

In an effort to merge graffiti culture and Lakota culture, The Cheyenne River Youth Project has again put together its Annual RedCan Graffiti Jam. The event, in which graffiti artists from around the world converge on the South Dakota prairie was wildly popular the first year and is scheduled in 2016 for July 6-9 at the Waniyetu Wowapi Art Park and throughout the small town of Eagle Butte.

“We’re thrilled to be hosting RedCan for a second year,” said Julie Garreau, CRYP’s executive director, in a release. ”The inaugural event exceeded our wildest expectations, and it really resonated with our community — particularly with our children. We’re deeply grateful to the artists who gave us their time, ideas and dedication, and we couldn’t be happier that several of them are returning this year.”

Biafra working on his mural in downtown Eagle Butte  (Photo: Courtesy CRYP)

According to the CRYP,  featured artists include Serval from Switzerland; Scribe from Kansas City, Missouri; East from Denver, Colorado; Kazilla from Miami, Florida; and Biafra, Cyfi, Daesk and Wundr from Minnesota’s Twin Cities.

According to Garreau, “RedCan provides inspiration to Cheyenne River’s young people, who seek to explore their identities, find their own unique voices, and express themselves in a positive, healthy way. It also offers offers an unprecedented opportunity for the Cheyenne River community as a whole to experience what has become the largest art movement in the history of humankind.

Youth artists in Waniyetu Wowapi (Photo: Courtesy CRYP)

“RedCan gives featured artists the opportunity to show off different techniques and styles and community members and visitors are able to get an inside look at the contemporary graffiti movement, which has evolved so dramatically in the last five decades.”

Throughout the RedCan event, the community and visiting artists will have access to free public art spaces dedicated to graffiti, street art and traditional Lakota painting. Additionally, hip-hop groups, native drum groups and native dancers will be attending.

Wundr in downtown Eagle Butte  (Photo Courtesy: CRYP)

“Once you’ve experienced it, RedCan will stay with you for a lifetime,” Garreau said in the release. “Artists from last year’s event and told us that RedCan was unlike anything they’d ever experienced and they were genuinely moved by it.”

CRYP’s Garreaeu is asking for support from from RedCan fans and has started a fundraising campaign through Crowdrise. “100 percent of the proceeds will be used to purchase paint, artist supplies, food and beverages, and to help cover the artists’ travel expenses.” For more information on how to help support RedCan, contact organizers at [email protected].

The Cheyenne River Youth Project, founded in 1988, is a grassroots, not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing the youth of the Cheyenne River reservation with access to a vibrant and secure future through a wide variety of culturally sensitive and enduring programs, projects and facilities that ensure strong, self-sufficient families and communities. For information about making donations and volunteering, call (605) 964-8200 or visit


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