SOA Alumni featured in Urban Shaman Exhibition: Roots Above Branches

Urban Shaman

Roots Above Branches

Artists: Robyn Adam, Niamh Dooley, Danielle Fenn, Kristin Flattery, Shawn Gosek, Sarah Stewart

April 6 to May 19, 2018
Opening Reception: Friday April 6, 8pm-11pm (opened for First Friday 5-11pm)

Roots above branches

Artist Statement
Roots Above Branches is a collective of six recent University of Manitoba – School of Art Indigenous graduates from the BFA honours program. Our name, Roots above Branches, references to both our shared use of tree branches and other natural materials in our individual practices. It also references the nature of some Indigenous languages wherein the order of the words does not matter in conveying meaning, we felt that this allows us to reference multiple Indigenous languages as we all come from varied backgrounds. This upcoming show incorporates everyone utilizing naturalistic materials with a sense of grounding and earthing. It will explore themes of identity, our individual perspectives, and our connection to the land. Roots Above Branches highlights the importance of where we come from and the cultures we are born into.

Robyn Adam’s connection is to craft tactility and connecting to her ancestors in Canada who identify as being Métis. Exploring relationship from construction materials like concrete with raw natural animal remains like bones, leather and fur she explores hybridity in pursuit of decolonization.

Niamh Dooley is an Oji-Cree and Irish contemporary artist based in Winnipeg. She’s a band member of St. Theresa Point First Nation in Treaty 5 territory of Manitoba, but grew up in Treaty 3 territory in Sioux Lookout, Ontario. She predominantly focuses on the exploration of identity, cultural issues, and her interest in the relationships between Indigenous people, past and present, and connecting them with both traditional and contemporary materials in her art practice.

Danielle Fenn is a white presenting Métis woman of Scottish-Cree, English and Irish ancestry. She lives and works in Treaty 1 territory in Winnipeg, Manitoba where she was born and raised. Fenn’s work explores notions of ground and the feeling of being grounded, formally and in relation to identity, women-hood, and the sacred.

Kristin Flattery is a contemporary Dakota and Anishinaabe artist and mother from Long Plain First Nation, Treaty 1 Territory. As a radical Indigenous political activist, her artwork embodies a performative story-telling nature, regarding our relationship and connectedness to the land and exposing the profound effects of colonialism, reclaiming Western spaces and our Indigenous Identities through the discourse of Aboriginal Sovereignty. What will the next 150 year look like for Kanata?

Shawn Gosek found himself drawn to working with natural elements such as clay and wood, creating sculptural artwork. His artwork takes a critical view of identity, gender, culture and our relationship to the earth while exploring what it means to be of two worlds, Indigenous and European. In his latest work he explored ideas of women’s roles and their connection to the earth as life givers and our first teachers.

Sarah Stewart is a Métis interdisciplinary artist working in installation, sculpture, video and design from Winnipeg, MB. Her work often utilizes found objects and materials, thematically she is interested in creating work that explores themes of communication, growth/stagnation, in-between states, and strange spaces.


Urban Shaman: Contemporary Aboriginal Art Gallery acknowledges the support, throughout the year, of our friends, volunteers, community and all our relations, NCI FM, Wawanesa Insurance, the Winnipeg Arts Council, the Manitoba Arts Council, the Canada Council for the Arts. ~MIIGWETCH / HAI HAI

Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art Gallery
203 – 290 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 0T2

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