"Resilience is a creative response to Call to Action #79 of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report: integration of "Indigenous history, heritage values, and memory practices into Canada’s national heritage and history.""
"Resilience rebukes the historical erasure of Indigenous women's bodies and the exclusion of their art. Images by 50 First Nations, Inuit and Métis women artists embody the multitude of connections and contradictions that constitute contemporary Indigenous identities. In inner cities and on highways, sites from which too many women have disappeared, the presence of Indigenous women is made highly visible, individualized (beyond statistics), celebrated. This project is a physicalized reminder of buried histories and diverse contemporary perspectives. Indigenous women artists present their ideas, their visions, themselves.
Racism and exclusion have long been entwined in the historical development of Canada. Within Indigenous populations across the country, the long-term effects of racist and genocidal strategies include high rates of suicide, alcohol and drug addictions, the horrific atrocities of residential schools, mental disorders, poverty, contaminated land and water, internalized violence and imprisonment. As we look beyond Canada's sesquicentennial celebrations of 2017, this project is pivotal at this moment in this country's history.
For far too long, Indigenous women have been misunderstood (their powerful status misinterpreted to conform to early Settler gender models), disenfranchised (Indigenous women, as well as men, did not have the right to vote federally until 1960), rendered invisible (Indigenous women lost their status and rights when they married outside of their communities until 1985) and, in horrifying numbers, murdered (Canada’s Minister for the Status of Women estimates there could be as many as 4,000 missing and murdered Indigenous women in this country). Furthermore, the experiences of Indigenous women in urban centres have largely been misrepresented or entirely ignored."