April 1, 2014
Eckhardt-Grammaté Hall, University of Winnipeg
This event is being organized in support of Walking With Our Sisters, a commemorative art installation at Urban Shaman from March 21st to April 12th. For more information about Walking With Our Sisters, please visit walkingwithoursisters.ca or urbanshaman.org.
& with Keewatin Otchitchak Traditional Women Singers
Presented by the UW Aboriginal Student Council and the Institute for Women’s and Gender Studies.
“Over 600+ native women in Canada have been reported missing or have been murdered in the last 20 years. Many vanished without a trace with inadequate inquiry into their disappearance or murders paid by the media, the general public, politicians and even law enforcement. This is a travesty of justice.
Walking With Our Sisters is by all accounts a massive commemorative art installation comprised of 1,600+ moccasin vamps (tops) created and donated by hundreds of caring and concerned individuals to draw attention to this injustice. The large collaborative art piece will be made available to the public through selected galleries and locations. The work exists as a floor installation made up of beaded vamps arranged in a winding path formation on fabric and includes cedar boughs. Viewers remove their shoes to walk on a path of cloth alongside the vamps.
Each pair of vamps (or “uppers” as they are also called) represents one missing or murdered Indigenous woman. The unfinished moccasins represent the unfinished lives of the women whose lives were cut short. Together the installation represents all these women; paying respect to their lives and existence on this earth. They are not forgotten. They are sisters, mothers, aunties, daughters, cousins, grandmothers, wives and partners. They have been cared for, they have been loved, they are missing and they are not forgotten.”