BUILDING CULTURAL LEGACIES
Building Cultural Legacies is a digital storytelling platform that aims to build knowledge, spark creativity and deepen connection by engaging citizens from diverse communities and generations in the sharing of stories about the history of visual arts in Hamilton between 1950 and 2000.
Featuring Rick Hill, Tim Johnson and Yvonne Maracle
Moderated by Rhéanne Chartrand
The Arty Crowd Runs Things:
Native Indian/Inuit Photographers’
Location: Joey and Toby Tanenbaum Pavilion, Art Gallery of Hamilton
March 19, 2020, 6-9pm
Founded in 1985 in downtown Hamilton, the Native Indian/Inuit Photographers’ Association (NIIPA) was one of the longest operating Indigenous arts service organizations in Canada. The organization played a key role nationally as an advocate for Indigenous photographers across Turtle Island (North America), as well as locally to the history of Indigenous art in Hamilton and the surrounding region.
Building Cultural Legacies presents a discussion with NIIPA members and accomplished artists Rick Hill, Tim Johnson and Yvonne Maracle, moderated by McMaster Museum of Art Curator of Indigenous Art Rhéanne Chartrand.
Rick Hill studied fine art photography at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the 1970s. He went on to become a curator and historian as well as a painter. He was the Manager of the Indian Art Centre in Ottawa; and the Museum Director at the Institute of American Indian Arts of Santa Fe, New Mexico. He is currently working on an exhibition for the Art Gallery of Hamilton that traces his curatorial experiences in contemporary Indigenous art from 1970 to 2000.
Tim Johnson, director of Landscape of Nations 360° Indigenous Education Initiative, artistic director of The Great Niagara Escarpment Indigenous Cultural Map, and artistic producer of Celebration of Nations, is an experienced education, museum,
and arts executive who was instrumental in the development of four masterworks of public art in the past four years. As the former Associate Director for Museum Programs at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian, Tim managed the museum’s largest organizational group across its facilities in Washington and New York. He has also been active in his home community of Six Nations of the Grand River within several prestigious education, arts, and journalism institutions for nearly four
Yvonne Maracle has used art and advocacy as a powerful tool for telling the stories of Indigenous people and improving life for those among them who face difficulty in urban Hamilton. Maracle provided many paths for other Indigenous artist as the co-founder of the Native Indian/Inuit Photographers’ Association (NIIPA), 1985 – 1999. She also assisted in the development of the first Native Photography gallery in 1986 through NIIPA. The gallery continued to play a major role in promoting and exhibiting Indigenous photography during NIIPA’s existence. Maracle was responsible for NIIPA’s programming and operations during her tenure as the Executive Director. Through Maracle’s leadership she was able to develop another art and cultural group called Branches of Native Development (BOND), 1988 – 2020. It began as a grass roots community group and NIIPA staff that worked together to host the annual POW WOW celebrations during the June 21 st National Aboriginal Days festival. She continues to advocate and lobby wherever possible and brings Indigenous awareness to those around her.
Rhéanne Chartrand is the Curator of Indigenous Art at McMaster Museum of Art. She holds a master’s degree in Museum Studies from the University of Toronto. A Métis curator and creative producer based in Hamilton and Toronto, Chartrand has curated interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary exhibitions, showcases, and festivals for venues and organizations such as the City of Toronto, Art Gallery of Mississauga, Harbourfront Centre, OCAD University, the Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance, the Aboriginal Pavilion at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games, Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, and the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC. Her curatorial work focuses on the praxis of survivance, Indigenous epistemes, relational aesthetics, representational politics, and gratitude.
The Arty Crowd Runs Things
Building Cultural Legacies - Discussion & Submission Workshops
APRIL 9, 2020
The stories told here have been shaped by many voices and provide an intricate and layered portrait of the city. The current vibrancy of the city owes much to the efforts of those who came before us, many of whom still work and live in the area. BCL provides a space for today’s generation of artists and residents to value the significant contributions made by their predecessors and sets the stage for Hamilton’s continued cultural growth.
The Building Cultural Legacies: Art in Hamilton 1950-2000 exhibition runs from November 23, 2019 - May 18, 2020 at the Art Gallery of Hamilton. Featuring works by local artists Jim Chambers, Roger Ferreira, Conrad Furey, Cees & Annerie van Gemerden, Catherine Gibbon, Hortense Gordon, V. Jane Gordon, Elizabeth Holbrook, Donna Ibing, Bryce Kanbara, Peter Karuna, P. Mansaram and George Wallace, along with archival materials from Hamilton's art history!
Building Cultural Legacies has been generously supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation.
Presented by the Hamilton Arts Council, in partnership with the Hamilton Public Library and the Art Gallery of Hamilton.
Further support provided by Centre 3, City of Hamilton, Hamilton Artists Inc., Hamilton Arts & Letters, Hamilton Conservatory for the Arts, McMaster Museum of Art, Workers Arts & Heritage Centre and You Me Gallery.
The arts have been a significant force in the shaping of Hamilton. Its current vibrancy owes much to the efforts of those who came before us, and yet this history is at risk of being lost or forgotten as individuals who lived and worked through these decades age and pass on.
Building Cultural Legacies will provide a space for today’s generation of artists and residents to value the significant contributions made by their predecessors and will set the stage for Hamilton’s continued cultural growth.
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