Indigenous youth in Montreal mix custom, modern methods in artwork exhibit at Botanical Backyard


Indigenous youth are the driving power behind an artwork symposium that is on show at Montreal’s Botanical Backyard this week.

The theme of the exhibit is “We’re nonetheless right here,” with First Nations and Inuit artists trying to show cultural traditions via modern artwork practices.

The symposium, which started final Sunday, is a part of celebrations for Indigenous Historical past Month.

It is being organized by the youth council of Native Montreal — a friendship and concrete Indigenous centre situated in Montreal’s Sud-Ouest borough.

Johnny Boivin needed to focus on the problem of entry to scrub water along with his work on the exhibit. (Simon Nakonechny/CBC)

“The complete theme is definitely resiliency and this exhibit is the right approach to present that Indigenous youth are thriving and that we’re nonetheless carrying on our traditions within the trendy and modern world,” stated Johnny Boivin, who’s each Innu and Atikamekw.

“A number of the mediums used are extra modern, however there’s nonetheless the standard side to it just like the beadwork and the pictures which might be represented on a number of the work.”

This showcase of small hoops with beads is supposed to focus on the federal authorities’s lack of ability to supply Indigenous communities with clear water. (Simon Nakonechny/CBC)

Boivin got here up with the idea of seven small hoops, every of them with a unique color and partially coated in hides, with strings of beads flowing down.

“The primary six ones are representing the six years by which Justin Trudeau was supposed to finish all boiling advisories in [Indigenous] communities, however he did not do it, so the final one is representing this damaged promise,” Boivin stated.

Jessie Arens, a youth navigator with Native Montreal, stated the exhibit helps construct a way of group amongst Indigenous artists in and across the metropolis. (Simon Nakonechny/CBC)

Twenty Indigenous artists contributed to the symposium. They arrive from a variety of communities together with Kahnawake, Kanesatake and northern Quebec. Work, images and movies are on show subsequent to reveals of conventional practices like basket weaving. 

The showcase will proceed till Saturday.

“In taking over this house and reclaiming this house and reclaiming this house, we actually hope to point out these practices are nonetheless round,” stated Jessie Arens, a youth navigator at Native Montreal. “They’re nonetheless related they’re nonetheless helpful,”

“And yeah, we’re nonetheless right here.”



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