In Sept/Oct of 2016 I had the amazing opportunity to complete a residency through Mikw Chiyâm, a unique arts concentration program offered through the Cree School Board of the Eeyou Istchee. The program brings in professional Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists who work with the students existing teachers "to promote accountability and to empower students by providing them with opportunities to discover, build and share their personal and collective voices through the arts."
It was my second visit to a Cree community up north but sure not to be my last. I had such an awesome group of students at Voyageur Memorial School who worked on this stencil-based mural project which they collectively proposed, researched and produced. They went above and beyond wht was expected, staying after school and on a PD day to paint. Such a great group, I couldnt have asked for a better mural crew!
With the help and guidance of their talented art teacher Marcela Henriquez, they created the beautiful work you see below. Inspired by the teachings of their Elders, they created the mural to pay homage.
The caption is in Cree and reads:
"The best way to predict the future is to create it, while keeping the past at heart."