Barry Ace: Nayaano-nibiimaang Gichigamiin | The Five Great Lakes

June 3 – July 2, 2017
Reception: Saturday, June 3 at 1PM

Nayaano-nibiimaang Gichigamiin presents a new series of honouring blankets for the Five Great Lakes. Hudson Bay trade blankets are adorned with unique Anishinaabe blanket strips that remix intricately designed floral motifs and geometric iconography composed of traditional glass-cut beads and contemporary electronic components (capacitors, resistors, and diodes). Each blanket is a homage to a specific Great Lake and retells Anishinaabeg historical and cultural narratives through the use of mnemonic iconography and code embedded into each blanket strip. The suite of contemporary honouring blankets are witness to the persistence of Anishinaabeg cultural continuity, through the confluence of the historical and contemporary.

Also presented in the exhibition is a select précis from the suite of photographic works entitled Memory Landscape. These works are a homage and requiem on the passing of a close friend documenting the artist’s connection and travel on the land and water in the Great Lakes region of Manitoulin and Algoma. These sensitive and personal diptychs simultaneously capture a presence and absence of a life that once was and are beautifully embellished with beaded medicine flowers and iconography as honouring tributes.

(l) Gichi-zaaga’igan Lake Ontario (Big Lake) (2016).
Hudson Bay blanket, velvet, beads, transistors, horse hair,
metal, mountain climbing rope. 183 x 228 cm.

(r) Ininwewi-gichigami: Lake Michigan (Illinois Sea) (2016).
Hudson Bay blanket, velvet, beads, resistors, horse hair,
metal, mountain climbing rope. 183 x 228 cm.

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