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CELEBRITY CONTRIBUTORS:

 

 

 

JAMES LUNA

James Luna

James Luna is a Pooyukawichum/Luiseno Indian and is an enrolled member of and resides on the La Jolla Indian Reservation in North County San Diego, California. Luna’s exhibition and performance experience spans thirty years.

Luna believes that installation and performance art, in which he employs a variety of media such as objects, audio and video, offers an opportunity like no other for Native people to express themselves without compromise in the Native traditional forms of ceremony, dance, and oral traditions. This benefit must be balanced to create work that is true without desecrating sacred aspects of Native rituals. It is a bit like performing on a tightrope etched in dirt by generations that have walked the path on these lands. Luna’s work is contemporary but literally grounded by its sense of place. He states, “ I feel centered on the Rez, as this is where we come from and no place else - we are the land and the land is us.”

 

 

KEITH SECOLA

Keith Secola

Keith Secola is an icon and ambassador of Native music. He is one of the most influential artists in the field today. Rising from the grassroots of North America, he is a songwriter of the people. Critics have dubbed him as the Native versions of both Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen. NDN Kars (Indian cars), his most popular song is considered the contemporary Native American anthem, achieving legendary status and earning him a well deserved cult following. It has been the number one requested song on tribal radio since the 1992. In 2011, he joined the ranks of Jimmy Hendrix, Hank Williams, Crystal Gale, and Richie Valens, and was inducted into the Native Music Hall of Fame.

 

MARIA CAMPBELL

Maria Campbell

Maria Campbell is a Metis author, playwright, broadcaster, filmmaker, and Elder. Her first book was the memoir Halfbreed (1973), which continues to be taught in schools across Canada, and which continues to inspire generations of indigenous women & men. She has written and/or directed films by the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), including My Partners My People, which aired on CTV for 3 years.
In addition to her work in the arts, Maria is a volunteer, activist and advocate for Aboriginal rights and the rights of women. She has worked as a researcher, meeting with elders to gather and record oral historical evidence of many aspects of aboriginal traditional knowledge, including medical and dietary as well as spiritual, social, and general cultural practices.

 

SHIRLEY BEAR

Shirley Bear 

 Shirley Bear is a multimedia artist, writer, traditional First Nation herbalist and Elder. Born on the Tobique First Nation, she is an original member of the Wabnaki language group of New Brunswick. As an artist, poet, and activist, she has played a crucial role in First Nation women’s creative and cultural communities.  Bear studied art in New Brunswick, New Hampshire, Boston, and Vancouver. She has worked extensively as a lecturer, performer, activist and curator including serving as cultural advisor to various institutions nationwide. She is the founding member of the Minquon Panchayat and has exhibited internationally. Her work has been purchased by collections across Canada including the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the National Arts Centre, the New Brunswick Art Bank and First Nations House of Learning at the University of British Columbia.

 

DUKE REDBIRD

Duke Redbird

 A poet, scholar, storyteller, inspirational speaker and television personality, Duke Redbird is a member of the Saugeen First Nation. He is the author of a collection of poetry and has been published in numerous anthologies including textbooks in Canada and the United States. In addition to holding a master’s degree, Redbird is a Fellow of McLaughlin College at York University and has served as Senior Associate of the York Centre for Applied Sustainability. Duke spends most of his time at his property in Madawaska Ontario, developing  a Centre for Compassionate Living called Legends North. The focus of the Centre, is the management of a food forest, based on the traditional care and keeping of an organic food production system.

 

RICHARD HILL

Richard Hill

Richard Hill is a curator, critic and art historian of Cree heritage. His areas of interest and expertise include historical and contemporary art created by Indigenous North American artists. As a curator at the Art Gallery of Ontario,  Dr. Hill oversaw the museum’s first substantial effort to include North American Aboriginal art and ideas in permanent collection galleries.

Professor Hill’s essays on art have appeared in numerous books, exhibition catalogues and periodicals. He has a long association with the art magazine Fuse, where he was a member of the board and editorial committee and remains a contributing editor. His PhD thesis was on the problem of agency in the art of Jimmie Durham.

 

CHIEF LYNN ACOOSE

Lynn Acoose

Lynn Acoose is from Sakimay First Nation where she resides with her partner, Gilbert Panipekeesick and their daughter, Riella. In July 2007, she was elected Councillor for Sakimay First Nations and was elected for a second term as Chief in September 2011. She has worked in the arts as an artist, programmer, editor, arts consultant, producer and curator. Lynn has maintained a multidisciplinary art practice, which includes writing, internet-based works and video installation. Her ongoing interaction with traditional knowledge keepers and investigation of the dialectic in traditional narratives began with her writings and progressed to collaborative work on the art web site, isi-pîkiskwęwin-ayapihkęsîsak (Speaking the Language of Spiders) with the late Ahasiw Maskegon Iskwew.

 

NEAL MCLEOD

Neal McLeod

Neal McLeod is half Cree (having grown up on the James Smith reserve in Saskatchewan) and half Swedish having had the fortunate opportunity to study abroad at the Swedish Art Academy at Umea.
In addition to being a painter, he is also a poet. His first book of poetry entitled, Songs to Kill a Wîhtikow, was nominated for several Saskatchewan book awards including book of the year in 2005. In 2007, he also published Cree Narrative Memory, which was nominated for book of the year. In the fall of 2008, he published his second book of poetry entitled Gabriel’s Beach.
He is currently editing a volume entitled Indigenous Poetics with Randy Lundy and Natasha Beeds. In addition he is working the following books: Dreaming Blue Horses (novel), a collection of humourous short stories entitled Neechi Hustle, a biography of Noel Starblanket, and A History of Cree Warfare and Diplomacy.

 

JOSEPH NAYTOWHOW

Joseph Naytowhow

Joseph Naytowhow is a gifted Plains/Woodland Cree (nêhiyaw) singer/ songwriter, storyteller and voice, stage and film actor from the Sturgeon Lake First Nation Band in Saskatchewan. He is renowned for his unique style of Cree/English storytelling, combined with original hybrid and traditional First Nations drum, flute and rattle songs. Joseph is the recipient of the 2006 Canadian Aboriginal Music Award’s Keeper of the Tradition Award and the 2005 Commemorative Medal for the Saskatchewan Centennial. In 2009 Joseph also received a Gemini Award for Best Individual or Ensemble Performance in an Animated Program or Series for his role in the Wapos Bay Series.
Joseph’s generosity and compassion for sharing cultural knowledge makes him a much sought after speaker, performer and teacher for children and adults alike.

 

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CONTRIBUTING ARTISTS:

ADRIAN STIMSON

KC ADAMS

LISA MYERS

JORDAN BENNETT

JESSIE SHORT

TERRIL CALDER

VANESSA DION FLETCHER

WALTER SCOTT

KEESIC DOUGLAS