Artists’ Talk: Inaabiwin
Artists’ Talk: Inaabiwin
Join artists Greg Staats, Hannah Claus, and Meryl McMaster from the Inaabiwin exhibition for an informal conversation in the Alma Duncan Salon. The lively talk will explore a relational approach to understanding and interacting with the world.
Greg Staats is Kanien’kehá:ka, Hodinǫhsǫ:ni born in Ohsweken, Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. A Toronto-based artist whose works combine language, mnemonics and the natural world as an ongoing process of conceptualising a Hodinǫhsǫ:ni restorative aesthetic that defines the multiplicity of relationships with trauma, the performative burdens of condolence, renewal and his continuously re-imagined role as observer and participant. Staats' works toward visualizing relational place-making from an on-reserve lived experience, all in an effort to elevate the mind and restore forward movement. These explorations are articulated in a myriad of forms including photography, sculpture, video, installation and text works, combining language, mnemonics and the natural world, based on Hodinǫhsǫ:ni methodologies and pre-emptive behaviors of acquiring, retaining and honoring memory, dedicated to countering a systemic forgetting. Staats has received the Duke and Duchess of York Prize in Photography and his work has been exhibited throughout North America. He has also served as faculty for two Aboriginal visual arts Thematic Residencies at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.
Meryl McMaster is Plains Cree from Red Pheasant First Nation, and is a member of Siksika First Nation. She is currently based in Ottawa. Her work is predominantly photography based, incorporating the production of props, sculptural garments and performance forming a synergy that transports the viewer out of the ordinary and into a space of contemplation and introspection. McMaster is the recipient of many awards, including the Scotiabank New Generation Photography Award, and the REVEAL Indigenous Art Award. Her work has been acquired and exhibited by various institutions within Canada and the United States, including the National Gallery of Canada, and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. She currently has a solo touring exhibition across Canada titled Confluence traveling until 2020.
Hannah Claus is of English and Kanien'kehá:ka / Mohawk ancestries, and a member of the Tyendinaga Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte. She is currently based in Montreal, Quebec. She uses installation to create sensory environments that speak of memory and transformation. Her work explores the particular, personal and living relationships within an Indigenous worldview, often focusing on Kanien'kehá:ka / Mohawk cosmography, in order to unsettle our perception of time, space and memory. Her work has been collection by various institutions and she has exhibited throughout Canada, the United States, in Germany, Switzerland, Mexico and Chile. Claus is also Vice-president on the board of directors for the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective and teaches contemporary Indigenous art as a sessional lecturer at Kiuna, a First Nations post-secondary institution, in Odanak, Quebec.
Danielle Printup is a Hodinohso:ni / Anishnaabe arts administrator and curator from Kitigan Zibi Anishnabeg, QC, with maternal roots in Ohsweken, ON. She studied Art History at the University of Guelph and went on to intern at the National Gallery of Canada before completing the Aboriginal Training Program in Museum Practices at the Canadian Museum of History. She has held various positions at SAW Gallery, the Indigenous Art Centre, and the City of Ottawa's Public Art Program. She is currently based in Ottawa where she works as the Programs Assistant at the Carleton University Art Gallery.
Image: Meryl McMaster, Murmur, 2013, ink jet prints. Collection of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. Photo: Lawrence Cook.