At Nimkii Aazhibikong, Indigenous Peoples came together for the Traditional Indigenous Tattoo Gathering on September 29 and 30, 2017.
Indigenous artists, elders, knowledge keepers, community members gathered in ceremony to share cultural teachings, practices, and explore symbolism.
This is the resurgence of Indigenous traditional tattooing and is vital to the revitalization, restoration and reclamation of Indigenous land, people and our communities.
At The Heart
On the land of the Coast Salish People, many call it Hastings Reserve. This is Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. In this neighborhood, the marginalized find a home. We live here as artists, healers, tricksters, lovers. This is where family comes to look for their lost ones, the missing. “Take a picture of us hobos!” he calls out. “We won’t be around here long.”
People sleep on the streets or in skid row hotels or shelters, stand in food lines. There is an alternate economy down here, different rules. Share. Earn respect. An elder walks down through the crowd of dealers on the corner and they all step aside. “You’re so beautiful…I love you, Mama”.
If you want to tell the truth, if you want to try for reconciliation, you have to talk about the Downtown Eastside. These people are at the heart of the whole story.
"At the Heart" Exhibition Sept. 19, 2013 UBC Museum of Anthropology (with Corinthia Kelly)
This photo essay is currently in development and will be published later in 2017.
Idle No More
Idle No More
A movement by the people, for the people.
Over the past four months, Indigenous People throughout Canada have been asserting their voices under the banner of Idle No More, part of a growing international movement originating in Saskatchewan by Indigenous women who launched the movement with its online #idlenomore hashtag in November, 2012.
It has been an incredibly inspiring time for many to witness and take part in calling for justice, respect and recognition of Indigenous inherent and treaty rights to lands, cultures and nationhood.
Including flash mobs, round dances, marches, fasting, prayers, road blocks, walks, teach-ins, boycotts, letter writing, traffic slow downs, etc, hundreds of thousands of Indigenous Peoples and allies are standing within a simple unified understanding: it is time for change and the time is now.