Billboard on Shaw co-presented by Native Women in the Arts and Critical Distance  in partnership with Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival and Partners in Art, featuring Shiibaashka’igan: Honouring the Sacred Jingle Dress by Nadya Kwandibens.

This outdoor component of the exhibition Materialized presents an image by newly-appointed Toronto Photo Laureate Nadya Kwandibens. Photographed at the Naotkamegwanning roundhouse, the portrait depicts three Anishinaabekwewag sharing a candid moment of laughter, subverting the “stoic Indian” trope that characterizes historical portraits by non-Indigenous photographers. It is said that laughter is medicine—this image brings together that energy with the healing power of the jingle dress.


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A photograph depicts a young boy sitting on the front steps of a house, with a landscape of an open field and trees shown in the far distance on the right-side. On the right and left side of the boy, two seated figures have been cut out of the photograph in a round, oblong shape, leaving an empty, white space. The edges of both cut-out shapes has been stitched with small, gold beads.

Featuring works by Joi T. Arcand, Celeste Pedri-Spade and Catherine Blackburn, with a public art billboard by Nadya Kwandibens
Curated by Ariel Smith

Core Exhibition at the 2022 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival

Opening reception
Friday, April 21, 6 to 8 pm
Artist Panel
April 22 from 1 to 3pm at Urbanspace Gallery

Native Women in the Arts and Critical Distance Centre for Curators are pleased to present Materialized in partnership with Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival and Partners in Art.

Combining portrait photography with elements from adornment arts, textiles, sculpture, and customary Indigenous art practices, Materialized examines themes of intergenerational memory, familial narrative, and decolonization. By using their craft to reclaim portraiture as a form of self-expression and self-determination, each artist resists the colonial metanarratives contained in settler-made images of Indigenous subjects.

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