Indigenous

Reaching Backward, Projecting Us Forward: My Cousin’s Cousin

Reflections of neon Beothuk pendants, electric colours, and textures coalesce into the dark, marbled concrete floor of Eastern Edge Gallery. The energy of the artwork in My Cousin’s Cousin cannot be contained to just the walls of the gallery—it activates all surfaces. This exhibition highlighting the interrelatedness between all beings was created as part of...

Read More

Melissa Tremblett’s Reprise

Tremblett’s Reprise is deeply personal, as it weaves text, photography, beadwork, natural found materials, and textiles to connective tissues of ancestry. This illustrates the artist reconnecting to lost histories and refining her relationship to her identity and Innu heritage. It’s both powerful and vulnerable.

Read More

Unsettling Settler Possession

In being invited to contribute to this issue of Visual Arts News on the theme of Change, we decided to put forward a conversation about how important it is for settler cultural workers to embrace and embody not knowing, in order to let go of and mourn attachments to the status quo—a status quo built...

Read More

Sovereign Acts

The exhibition Sovereign Acts includes the work of Indigenous artists Rebecca Belmore, Lori Blondeau, Dayna Danger, Robert Houle, James Luna, Shelley Niro, Adrian Stimson, and Jeff Thomas as they explore various aspects of artistic performance as an act of cultural resistance.

Read More

All These In-betweens

Logan MacDonald on how to reclaim what has been lost

MacDonald tells me that “this work is sad. It is about contemporary mourning and historical mourning, but it is also a call to action and to empathy.” In these betweens there is also a generative tension that illuminates hope and possibility.

Read More

Ketu’elmita’jik / They want to go home

Jordan Bennett

When you first walk into the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia’s exhibition space holding Ketu’elmita’jik, created by Ktaqmkuk (Newfoundland) artist Jordan Bennett, the colours and designs flood your senses. They enter you like some otherworldly creation that has seeped into your brain and started playing music you can’t quite hear. This site-specific work fills the...

Read More

How to Commemorate an Absence

In Nova Scotia and elsewhere people are grappling with the issue of what to do with monuments associated with a painful past, and are asking whether the action of tearing down statues like that of Edward Cornwallis in Halifax helps to redress a history of violence, or whether the removal simply hides or disguises what has happened. In thinking through the dilemma posed by this question, we are forced to consider when it is appropriate to remove a monument, what should happen to it when it is taken down, and what to do with the space left behind.

Read More

#callresponse : conversation & action

Artists Christi Belcourt, Maria Hupfield, Ursula Johnson, Tania Willard, and Laakkuluk Williamson-Bathory collaborated and conspired with Isaac Murdoch, Esther Neff & IV Castellanos, Cheryl L’Hirondelle, Meagan Musseau, and Tanya Tagaq to create a series of site-specific works that have continued to evolve as an ongoing project, and result in unique gallery exhibitions and across the country. Engaging with the hashtag #callresponse—perhaps the most ubiquitous symbol of a modern form of conversational structure and organization—viewers are invited to peek into a much larger and more expansive meta-dialogue.

Read More

Kent Monkman’s Shimmering Resilience

Indigenous art challenges and overthrows colonial expectations. It combats shame. It pushes beyond prejudice, shimmers with resilience, and counteracts art history’s Eurocentric mythology. First Nations Cree artist and curator, Kent Monkman’s exhibition Shame and Prejudice: A Story of Resilience responds to the Canada 150 celebrations through the subversive lens of his gender-fluid alter ego Miss...

Read More

Re-discovering Indigenous Identities

The impact of the Identify Festival

To “identify” is to name something and render it visible, even if it may have been present all along. Organized by Eastern Edge Gallery, the Identify festival facilitates the gathering and sharing of traditional and contemporary artistic and cultural practices of Indigenous peoples in Newfoundland and Labrador including Mi’kmaq, Inuit, Innu, Southern Inuit of Nunatukavut...

Read More

Black Light, White Night

Nocturne 2018

This year was Nocturne’s tenth edition. A milestone for the organization, marked by a partnership with the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective, who helped select Raven Davis as Nocturne’s first Indigenous Curator. Davis, in turn, selected this Nocturne’s theme: Nomadic Reciprocity, a multilayered reflection on what is given and what is taken as we move through space, and as we move here in Halifax over unceded and unsurrendered Mi’kmaq territory.

Read More

Art Talks Gallery Tour

A free bus tour of K'jipuktuk/Halifax galleries featuring talks with indigenous artists and curators: Carrie Allison, Aiden Gillis, Tarah Hogue, Maria Hupfeld & Wanda Nanibush. Followed by the launch of the Fall issue of Visual Arts News: UNKOWN LANDS.

Read More