Imagining or visioning is the first step in creating strategies of transformation and change. Contemporary artists like Joi Arcand not only visually counter particular colonial histories and current realities she also imagines a future post-colonial reality. This project is the first of a series of projects that will exhibit in 2014 at paved, aka gallery and Wanuskewin Heritage Park. The series of projects are connected thematically to address in a multi-faceted way, Canada’s missing and murdered Aboriginal women.
otē nīkān misiwē askīhk – Here On Future Earth (Amber Motors) is an image of a small business on 20th Street, Saskatoon. The plains Cree text replaces English text alluding to a future reality where Canada’s first languages are indigenous. Language is connected to First Nations sense of power and place as each language is regionally unique. Arcand’s use of Plains Cree within the image connects this particular Indigenous group to this territory. Colonial languages spoken and read by Indigenous peoples on a daily basis is a reminder to Indigenous people on an incessant level that their language and culture sits on the margins of empire as is their right to justice. Indigenous women are amongst the most vulnerable in our country and the re-visioning of a power-shift alludes to the need for transformation and change in our current reality to address prejudicial injustice, in this particular context towards Aboriginal women in Saskatchewan.
This billboard is presented through a partnership with Sasipenita Educational Exhibit and through the generous support of SIGA: the Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority.