February 21st, 2013
So there is going to be a really cool arts and culture festival taking place this weekend – it’s free and the schedule looks really good with some really amazing Aboriginal artists appearing on panels and highlighting their art. I am very humbled to have a few of my photographs as a part of one of the events.
Check it out and spread the word!
Here is some information about this weekends events:
A Winter Village: Indigenous Arts and Culture Festival
Circadia Indigena, First Peoples’ Art and Performance in Canada’s National Capital, is pleased to announce its first annual public event: A Winter Village: Indigenous Arts and Culture Festival Free and open to all.
This weekend arts festival takes place within the traditional season of storytelling, and occurs during the beginning and renewal of the year’s ceremonial cycle. This gathering will offer exceptional multidisciplinary arts and cultural programming, and will be a platform for celebrating Indigenous winter culture by highlighting the storytelling traditions of First Nations’, Inuit and Métis Peoples. Indigenous storytelling has many forms; Creation stories, history, visions, teachings, news, ceremony, messages, songs, and many more. This gathering will draw on these forms and showcase them through Elders, cultural presenters, and artists in a presentation and workshop format. The gathering will be a space for the sharing of Indigenous knowledge through storytelling, cultural presentations and performances by First Peoples’ artists.
This year we will gather the artists together across three different themes within the Winter Village: (1) The time of year tells us it is the beginning and renewal of the ceremonial cycle, we will share the ways First Peoples’ mark this time with celebration and ceremony. (2) We will highlight our storytelling traditions within this traditional “storytelling time” of the winter cycle. (3) And we will share the beauty of the winter cultures of First Nation’s, Inuit and Métis peoples.
Everyone is welcome to come and celebrate First Peoples’ winter culture through the artistic traditions of First Nations’, Inuit and Métis artists presenting dance, theatre, visual arts, storytelling, film and music. Friday, February 22nd, 6:30 to 9 pm. Saturday, February 23rd, 1 to 9 pm. Sunday, February 24th, 1 to 3:30 pm. Richelieu-Vanier Community Centre, 300 Des Pères-Blancs Avenue, Ottawa, Ontario
See https://www.facebook.com/pages/Circadia-Indigena/407518199307286 for more info.
February 20th, 2013
This past January I had the absolute pleasure of doing a second workshop on learning to make birch bark baskets. I was super excited that the workshop was going to be offered at lunch hours again as I find making the baskets very relaxing and fun. It’s also nice to better understand and appreciate all the effort that goes into making one of these baskets.
We are fortunate in that we don’t have to go into the forest to carefully harvest the bark in the winter, or go out in the heat of summer to dig up the roots to bind the baskets together.
Once I had finished making my basket I had to think hard about what I wanted to include in the design of the basket. I used some rounds from twigs to add small details to the basket – I wanted it to be all natural in color.
On one side (above) I did a turtle swimming though the water. You can see a few small swirls in the top right hand side which I wanted to represent my spirit name which loosely translates into swirling water [at foot of rapids].
On the second side I did sky domes with plants growing. On the left side I wanted to represent wind blowing and the North star on the right side.
I was very happy with the results of this basket and I definitely look forward to continuing to learn how to make them…and maybe get out into the forest to harvest my own supplies.
February 19th, 2013
So I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus from blogging, not that I haven’t been doing things but just got busy with life.
I have been getting pieces together for various local shows and working on new pieces.
I have been busy trying to complete vamps for Christi Belcourts “Walking with our Sisters” project. This is going to be a Commemorative Art Installation for the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women of Canada. I’ve completed one pair of beaded and silkscreened vamps (I will do a separate entry on my vamps once they are all completed). And I’ve been applying for some different shows taking place in 2013.
I also completed a recent a second birch bark basket – again, I will post photos in a separate entry.
Anyhow, I am going to try and be better about sharing my ongoing projects.
Happy 2013! A year of changes and excitement!
June 5th, 2012
So the last few weeks I’ve been busy working on some new art pieces and photographs for a few art shows coming up. The first one this month is a part of Westfest, the exhibit is “Spiritual Legacy: Celebrate Aboriginal Art”. I’ve completed 2 new silkscreen and beadwork pieces.
The silkscreen I created is based on the tree in this Brownie photograph. I love the way the branches bend and twist.
My plan was to bead on the leaves to this tree. So using black cloth I silkscreened 2 trees in gold and on one tree I used green beads to create the earthly tree and one in gold to create the sky tree. (This is a hipstamatic picture I took while beading the earthly tree.)
Here is the backgrounder for the event:
WESTFEST Spiritual Legacy: Celebrate Aboriginal Art
At the heart of Aboriginal art is a spiritual legacy from cultures built on the worldview that all is sacred and we are all relations. First Nations, Inuit and Métis artists will participate in the exhibit Spiritual Legacy: Celebrate Aboriginal Art at All Saints’ Anglican Church during Westfest Festival Saturday and Sunday, June 9 and 10, 2012. The exhibit brings together art that highlights the relationship between human beings and the natural world. The artwork will be on display with artists present in the Chapel of the Holy Spirit, 347 Richmond Road, Ottawa, Ontario.
Join First Nations, Inuit and Metis artists:
· Emily Brascoupe-Hoefler
· Heather Campbell
· Jaime Koebel
· Kirk Brant
· Simon Brascoupé
Spiritual Legacy: Celebrate Aboriginal Art
June 9 and 10, 2012
· Saturday 9am to 6pm
· Sunday 12pm to 6pm
Location: All Saints’ Anglican Church’s Chapel, 347 Richmond Road, Ottawa, Ontario, K2A 0E7.
Westfest is a free art festival!
Westfest is a party like no other! Each year more than 100,000 people attend Westfest during our outdoor, three day celebration of Canadian art and culture.
As a FREE multidisciplinary art festival dedicated to showcasing Canadian artists and their work in an accessible and inclusive setting, Westfest fills 14 city blocks with a variety of artistic disciplines, such as music, contemporary dance, visual art, media art, performance art, spoken word, poetry and fiction readings, Aboriginal art forms, children’s entertainment, buskers, street performers, and much more.
May 3rd, 2012
So I have been working on a surprise for my dad and I’m finally done! You may have seen some of the photos on twitter but here is the whole series of photos.
This is a surprise so PLEASE don’t tell my dad – thanks!
This was part of a workshop held over lunch hour at work. First they give you the form and some cedar root. You create holes in the basket form and then you use halved cedar root to stitch up the side. (It’s harder than it looks!)
You stitch up the side and around the top with a switch of willow or dogwood. You can see on the far side where a double stitch holds where the switch connects – this helps prevent the switch from possibly breaking the root.
To make the lid I cut out a circle and then they gave me a stripe to make the inner lid. Then I did the second switch around the top.
Once I finished the basket I really wanted to think about the design and pick something that would mean something to my dad.
I drew up a bunch of ideas (you can see behind the basket). I wanted to include a bear, which is our clan. I added the North star because it’s in line with ursa major, the big bear, in the sky and another big star to represent the star that is in the “tail” of ursa major. This is a story that my dad used to tell me growing up. I did a border with 2 corn shoots.
On the other side I did a design of sky domes with corn shoots and a cedar tree. Again, aspects of stories that my dad told me growing up.
Here’s the finished basket – as time goes on the design will continue to darken up and become more prominent.
Here’s the finished side.
Okay, so I finished off the top with a strawberry plant and flowers, a star and a whirlpool. These are all symbols that I think represent me and my dad will get it when he sees it. I wrote a little message to him on the bottom with the date.
Special thanks to Chuck Commanda and Janet Lecuyer who ran this amazing workshop – they were so helpful and really helped me with the more difficult aspects of this basket. Now I have to get more supplies so I can make more!
March 8th, 2012
So I saw this cool thing on a friend’s facebook page, Moss Graffiti. What is Moss Graffiti? It’s living art, sometimes called environmental art. I’m thinking this may be a spring time project for me…
Visit these links for more information:
March 4th, 2012
This year marks the 11th annual New Sun Conference, and like for the last 11 years, I was there. The New Sun Conference has been a part of my year for a while now and always is inspiring to me. Although I’m no longer a university student, I do still appreciate learning about other Aboriginal artists and broadening my horizons.
Last year’s conference was shortly after some health problems, it was good to get back to something familiar and invigorating. It was the 10th annual conference and during the lunch time performance a piece of Eagle down landed close by. We were told that this down was sacred and it was “lucky” for it to land on us. I put this little piece of down in a container which I keep with the drops I use to treat my eye disease. I also have a small shell that I got as a gift at Women’s World last summer. They remind me of good memories and to stay positive. It’s hard to believe a year has gone by but I’m definitely ready to start this new year!
This year’s conference was amazing, every year it seems to out do itself, it always makes me think and inspires me. That’s not to say that the topics are always easy, in fact, this year many of the topics were challenging. This year touched on so many things: about the role of women, murdered and missing Aboriginal women, reality, technology, health issues, about our communities, abuse, violence, equality, identity, stereotypes but, also, about hope and evolution. KC Adams started the morning off with a talk about cyborg hybrids and identity. I really appreciated how she chooses to appreciate her cultures. I have a similar cultural background and being bi-racial is definitely about balance and recognizing and appreciating where you come from and how that shapes who you are. I love her concept of the cyborg hybrid and creating identity that is free of racism and stereotypes.
Watching the clip from “Finding Dawn”, produced by Christine Welsh, was especially hard. This week I went to a talk with the aunt of another missing Aboriginal girl. Hearing her first hand account of what her family had gone through was heartbreaking. As was watching Ramona Wilson’s family honor her after she was murdered on the Highway of Tears. Where did these women go? Then John Kim Bell reminded us about our successes. I still remember going to my first Aboriginal Achievement Awards in Ottawa as a young girl – how excited I was to learn about all those receiving awards, seeing the amazing show and seeing what other Aboriginal people were doing. It was one of the first times I was exposed to new Aboriginal people to look up to. It was very inspiring to my young self.
At lunch we were all entertained by the crew from BluePrintForLife - the highlight, having two elders work the DJ booth.
The afternoon had great speakers Skawennati and BluePrintForLife – about community outreach that is culturally appropriate, reaching the youth in our communities – bringing communities together, in physical and virtual reality, through the arts.
So where is the hope? The hope is in programs like BluePrintForLife and in each of the presenters, who all have something to offer through their art, each reconfiguring their reality, and ours.
May 20th, 2010
So I’ve got a variety of projects and things on the go.
I think one of the ones I’ve been most excited about this year is the Traveling Toy Camera Project – it has now been used in 4 countries (including 2 provinces, 3 states) over the past few months. It’s just been to England and will be traveling to Sweden next. I have loved to see what everyone had photographed and the wide range the Vivitar UWS offers. There has been a such a variety in subject matter and color or B&W film. There is something about the way that a photograph documents a place, a person or a time. I know that the large piece of graffiti in one of my photographs has recently been painted over.
I am so excited for the camera to keep on moving and continuing around the world! We’ve got several more countries, continents and places for it to go!
I’ve also been busy reviewing cameras for toycamera dot com and will have 2 reviews coming out in the coming months.
I really enjoyed reviewing the Holga TIM – a cute little Holga half-frame/stereo camera. Here are a few sneak peaks of my results but check toy camera dot com for my full review and photographs.
And the other camera is the Pop 9 - again, here is a sneak peak but stay tuned for the full review and more photographs.
I will be working on some pieces for the Odawa Art Auction raffle that will be taking place at the end of the month and hopefully making some headway in this regard over the long weekend.
That’s it for now – stay tuned!
March 1st, 2010
I say it every year…this was the best year but I mean it, this was the best year! Saturday morning at 6:15am we packed up the car and left the winter wonderland to drive back in Ottawa for the New Sun conference.
If you’ve read my blog for at least a year then you know that for the last 9 years I’ve been attending the New Sun conference. Every year new speakers come, some I’ve heard of and some I haven’t but I am always, always profoundly moved. Like New Sun is the the air that fills my spirit and rejuvenates me for spring and starting another year.
This year I was excited to hear from all of the speakers, especially the first two. I was worried we might accidently sleep in, the weather or traffic would be bad and this would cause me to miss the first speakers – fortunately, none of these things happened and although I was sad to miss the morning prayer and welcome, I was very happy to make it in time for the speakers.
Read the rest of this entry »
February 10th, 2010
Every year I am excited to attend the New Sun conference at Carleton University. I went to the first one 9 years ago when I was in 1st year university studying visual arts at UWO. I was so excited to be surrounded by accomplished and interesting Aboriginal artists. I still remember when Drew Hayden Taylor and Don Kelly spoke and hearing Jeffrey Thomas speak about photography.
New Sun Poster
Since then I’ve enjoyed listening to and meeting many inspiring artists in all genres – culinary arts, film, dance, vocal, photography and the list goes on and on! There is no other conference like New Sun – it’s relaxed and intimate venue and informative speakers can not be matched! And don’t even get me started on the amazing buffet at lunch! )
The New Sun conference is just weeks away and already I’m excited about some of the artists I am aware of already, like the extremely talented Christi Belcourt that I met last summer but all the speakers have peaked my interest.
Please visit www.trickstershift.com for more information and check out this year’s beautiful poster.