I was super excited to participate in this installation project in Picton. This spoke to me on a few levels. The JAM project would allow me to express my feelings regarding the oppression of women and particularly indigenous women. I knew it would not be hard for me to reach deep into my roots and pull out some raw feelings. I feel strongly about women’s empowerment and I am happy I can inspire at a local level. I wanted to help in the best way I knew how … through my ART. Our collaborative desire to turn the light on this systemic problem, that happens so close to home, was my fuel.
I come from Métis roots specifically from Cree in Manitoba. I am ninth generation Canadian. My family has traced its roots back before the Louis Riel uprising. When I came to live in the county, I realized, that I now have the opportunity to honour my grandmothers, having Tyendinega so close. I attended womens ceremony there whenever I could and learnt first hand of the oppression of indigenous women and the results of residential schools.
When I was living in Toronto, I ran an artroom for the homeless in the inner city for 10 years. I saw and felt the poverty… and the neediness of women. I witnessed the difficulties of being female on the streets. That is why now, I gladly give to “Alternatives for Women” here in PEC.
I feel the oppression of women in general, as I grew up in an era where women had to bite their tongues to make things happen, and suffer abuse silently. Also being the youngest of 6 kids, I knew what it was like to be passed over and wait patiently. The difference is, that it compelled me to try harder and never give up. That is why I now do big passionate ART!
With the occurrence of this COVID pandemic, visual artists have to really think sideways and push themselves in other directions, not giving up on their ART. I particularly feel there is a greater need to give the general public, not just an exclusive few, an informed artistic view of an expression of this time. From my background in interior design, I am always thinking in 3 dimensions. This compels me to focus, entertain and inspire, to encourage an audience to see things in another way. Installations are the perfect vehicle for me to do this.. I will take this opportunity wherever/whenever I can to create and inspire.
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