Press Release | Indigenizing the Campus Through Art

Landing_NewSymposium_KarenLeeEdwardsKeynote speaker: Robert Houle
Presenters: Michelle LaVallee, Mackenzie Gallery, Regina; Jenny Western, University of Manitoba; Sherry Farrell Racette, University of Manitoba; Cathy Mattes, University of Brandon; the Ephemerals, University of Winnipeg.
The School of Art’s 100th anniversary symposium, Indigenizing the Campus Through Art: Past and Future Perspectives, includes speakers: acclaimed artist Robert Houle, Michelle LaVallee, Mackenzie Gallery, Regina; Deborah Young and Sherry Farrell Racette, University of Manitoba; Jenny Western, Winnipeg; Cathy Mattes, University of Brandon; the Ephemerals, University of Winnipeg.
Indigenizing the Campus Through Art  aims to begin a conversation that explores the role that art may play in amplifying the voices of indigenous people throughout our Campus. Speakers will address the broader social and political, as well as educational, issues related to indigenous art by honoring the past while looking forward to the future. 
The program for the afternoon will include three separate presentations: two talks and a panel. Michelle LaVallee, Artist and Associate Curator of the Aboriginal Collective of the MacKenzie Art Gallery in Regina, will be the first speaker. 
Next, Jenny Western, independent curator and University of Manitoba Art Collections Coordinator, will lead the afternoon’s panel presentation which will include individuals who are working towards ensuring that Indigenous art and artists have a place on the Campus (and in the larger community). Panelists include Sherry Farrell Racette, Associate Professor, Native Studies, University of Manitoba; Cathy Mattes, Assistant Professor, Visual and Aboriginal Arts, University of Brandon; and The Ephemerals (Aboriginal Identity on Campus, University of Winnipeg).

The keynote address will be given by Robert Houle, an acclaimed artist who is helping to define indigenous identity. A survivor of the Indian residential school system, he is a member of Sandy Bay First Nation in Manitoba and currently lives and works in Toronto. He received a degree in art history from the University of Manitoba, and studied painting and drawing at the International Summer Academy of Fine Arts in Salzburg, Austria. He taught Native studies at the Ontario College of Art and Design University in Toronto for fifteen years. He has exhibited widely and written extensively on major contemporary First Nations and Native American artists.  Houle will be awarded an Honourary Doctorate from University of Manitoba at the Convocation on June 4, 2014.

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