At the University of Winnipeg is a new art installment that hopes to promote a conversation for reconciliation. Using paper and black pens, the large piece aims to use words to impart feelings and thoughts of reconciliation.
Cheyene artist Edgar Heap of Birds, host of the art initiative, said, “the realities that had been lost for many generations can be outlined as required. He added that he had been doing this format for over two decades. So why not use word art on the process of reconciliation.
The collaborative nature joined by over 50 people contributed to the installation, Heap of Birds said, “is what is important to promote healing and moving onward.”
“People who joined with different races and cultures gathered as one and created something better. So as an act, it’s a great symbol of how do you get along with the global community.” Thanks to word art it has shown its true meaning.
“Art is extensive, instantaneous, investigative and meaningful.”
University of Winnipeg Student Association president Kevin Settee acknowledges his contributions to the project as directing to what he sees as a “controversial word.”
“I think it’s valuable that we jointly look at it to figure out how we can move onwards,” Settee said.
“Conversations are necessary, these actions are required to have people disburden their stuff off their spirits, bodies, and minds.” It’s how word art can unload their burdens.
‘Living in a dangerous America’
When Heap of Birds was asked how Canada handled indigenous issues as compared with the United States, he praised the providence of his northern friends, drawing more attention to the evident denial of Native American issues down south.
He says that “Canada is still healing its wounds. There is nothing more in the media about native affairs than in the U.S.
“The question is so difficult that they have ignored it, and you can’t make any progress that way.”
The Pathways to Reconciliation conference presents its word art installment, which is now ongoing in the University of Winnipeg up until June 17. The piece will then spend the summer hanging at Stella’s Café on Portage Avenue.