The Tom Thomson Art Gallery in Owen Sound, Ontario (Canada) invited our neighbours at Saugeen First Nation to partner with us for programming with the Canadian Spirit Festival. The Festival aims to represent cultural richness and diversity of our region through the celebration of the arts in all forms: visual, music, literacy, dance, film and culinary. One of our first visual art projects affiliated with this collaborative effort is Bridge: Ahzhogun as part of the global Inside Out Project.
Saugeen First Nations Youth and Elder groups came together to share their knowledge and to learn about each other. Each youth and elder was then asked to write a word or a phrase on a canvas (in either Ojibway or English) describing the person they had met. The Ojibway language is something that First Nation communities are striving to revive amongst their younger generations. This canvas was then used as a backdrop for the portraits. By creating a visual bridge or ahzhogun (Ojibway translation for the word bridge) between these generations as well as the two communities, these portraits speak louder than words to create a sense of community pride and place. Portraits will be installed throughout Owen Sound and Saugeen First Nation during the Canadian Spirit Festival in September of 2013.
Become a Group Leader by organizing an Inside Out Action in your community. Gather 50 or more participants that stand behind a message you are passionate about and paste your portraits in your community.