Funded by the Toronto Art Council’s Animating Historic Sites grants program, a group of artists are doing a Canoe Art Project at Todmorden Mills in the Don Valley. The theme of the show is the canoe, and is called Journey by Canoe – An Indigenous Art Project and Exhibition.
The artists bring to Todmorden Mills Heritage Site their interpretations of the journeys we take, both literally, as well as, philosophically.
The canoe will be used to portray a visual representation of a journey that we all have taken, whether the Original Peoples of this land or New Canadians from other lands. The canoe will be used as a metaphor for such a journey. It will be… a story of one’s own migration….learning not only to paddle the canoe, but also walk the path of life too…Maybe through this art project, not only will First Nation history and culture be illustrated, but all the Sacred Colours (all races) involved may find a way to bridge any cultural differences.
Beginning July 15th, ten paddles, made earlier by community youth, will be decorated for the exhibition. As well several canvases will be painted too.
After July 28th artists will work, and can be observed, in the Papermill Gallery, each painting a canoe with imagery depicting the life journeys of not only First Nations peoples, but all people. A third canoe hull will be also worked on during this time by a mosaic artist.
A group show will be mounted, beginning on August 4th, and running to August 16th. We did strive to maintain an equal number of female and male artists for balance. But as usual the women outpowered the men….so we needed twice as many male artists lol lol. Seriously though the artists involved will include Jenny Blackbird, Leslie Kachena McCue, LauraLee K. Harris, Maria Hupfield, Keesic Douglas, Dave Pawis, Lindy Kinoshameg, Norman Knott, Randall Knott, Ed Tasse, Joseph Sagaj and Mike Ormsby. Other guest artists may yet contribute.
On Thursday August 13th from 6 to 8:30 pm, there will be a reception held for the art show….as well as the entire canoe art project. To celebrate the journey of the canoe. Traditional Elder Jacqui Lavalley will do the opening and closing. Spirit Wind Women’s Hand Drum Group will perform, as well as Council Fire’s Little Embers big drum. Food and refreshments will be catered by Nish Dish.
Please come out and enjoy….come and celebrate the canoe and its journey.