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THE NEXT 7 DAYS:     EVENTS (10)     +     OPENINGS (10)     +     DEADLINES (2)     +     CLOSINGS (14)
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Textile Museum of Canada is pleased to present
Beads, they’re sewn so tight

Bev Koski, Berlin #1, 2015 (left); Ottawa #1, 2014 (right); courtesy of the artist

Bev Koski
Katie Longboat
Jean Marshall
Olivia Whetung

Lisa Myers

October 10, 2018-May 26, 2019

OPENING RECEPTION: Wednesday October 10, 6-7:30 PM
Artists will be present, all are welcome!

In beadwork, threads create structure and hold beads together, forming a seemingly invisible scaffold. As metaphor and as material, they unite design, form, and meaning. Beads, they’re sewn so tight takes up the depths of social and political relations expressed through beadwork, including living traditions, family, and community networks – embedded in the visual language of pattern and surface design.

Beads, they’re sewn so tight presents the work of four contemporary artists who employ distinct techniques in their approach to beads and thread. Using bead weaving, loom work, and embroidery, their artwork threads through formal concerns of colour and design while attending to critical issues such as language retention, stereotypes, and social/environmental injustices for Indigenous people.


TEACHERS’ EVENING | Focus on Indigenous Learning
Wednesday October 17, 2018 | 5-7 pm
Explore strategies for teaching about First Nations, Métis, and Inuit cultures and perspectives. The program will include a tour of current exhibitions, profiling the work of contemporary Indigenous artists. Resource guides will be distributed and light refreshments will be served. Free: Open to all educators | REGISTRATION REQUIRED

One Wednesday evening & one Saturday afternoon per month
Each month we offer free workshops on different textile techniques. Workshop facilitators will teach beading techniques on Wednesday January 23, 2019, 5:30-7:30 pm; Saturday February 9, 2019, 1-4 pm; and Wednesday February 20, 2019, 5:30-7:30 pm
Free with admission | REGISTRATION REQUIRED | Supported by the J.P. Bickell Foundation

Friday January 25-Sunday January 27, 2019
Providing a place and time for people to connect and gather, this symposium is the thread that links people through processes and materials, with workshops and seminars that build on the scholarship related to bead and quill work in contemporary Indigenous art practices. REGISTRATION REQUIRED | Supported by the Jean A. Chalmers Fund for the Crafts

Wednesday May 1, 2019, 6-7 pm
Guest curator Lisa Myers will lead a gallery tour, sharing the conceptual underpinnings of Beads, they’re sewn so tight. Free with admission

Beads, they’re sewn so tight is generously supported by the Ontario Arts Council and presenting sponsor BMO Financial Group.

Jean Marshall, Ring of Fire I (2015); courtesy of the artist

About the Artists

Bev Koski is an Anishnabekwe artist who lives in Vancouver. She is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and has a BFA from York University. Koski was involved for many years with 7th Generation Image Makers, an art and mural program for Indigenous youth, run by Native Child and Family Services of Toronto. She has shown her work at the Harbourfront Centre in Toronto, Kamloops Art Gallery, Carleton Art Gallery, Thunder Bay Art Gallery, Gallery 44 and Oakville Galleries. She is a constant beader.

Katie Longboat is both Mohawk and Cree from Six Nations of the Grand River and is currently living and working in Toronto. She began her beading journey at the age of 14, inspired by the beautiful beadwork worn by traditional and contemporary dancers at local powwows. Katie took an interest in other beading styles and began to merge traditional First Nations beadwork with contemporary practices. She enjoys creating intricate pieces that pull together traditional Cree florals, Iroquois raised beading and contemporary jewellery making techniques. Katie works full time as a Child and Youth Counsellor and teaches beading classes at the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto and other community organizations.

Jean Marshall is of Anishinaabe/English descent, born and raised in Thunder Bay, Ontario. She comes from Kitchenuhmaykoosib, also known as Big Trout Lake. She currently lives along the shore of Lake Superior, on the lands of Animikii-Wajiw/Thunder Mountain also known as Fort William First Nation, Ontario. Marshall loves working with beads, fabric and porcupine quills and has learned her practice through observation, mentorship and by participating in residencies. She admires the creative thinkers Patricia Ningewance, Rebecca Belmore, Christian Chapman and the late Ahmoo Angeconeb. Her work focuses on land, identity, community and language. She was the recipient of the K.M Hunter Award in 2012 and the REVEAL, Indigenous Art Award in 2017.

Olivia Whetung is anishinaabekwe and a member of Curve Lake First Nation. She completed her BFA with a minor in anishinaabemowin at Algoma University in 2013, and her MFA at the University of British Columbia in 2016. Whetung works in various media including beadwork, printmaking, and digital media. Her work explores acts of/active native presence, as well as the challenges of working with/in/through Indigenous languages in an art world dominated by the English language. Her work is informed in part by her experiences as an anishinaabemowin learner. Whetung is from the area now called the Kawarthas, and presently resides on Chemong Lake, Ontario.

About the Curator

Lisa Myers is an independent curator, artist and assistant lecturer in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University. Her curatorial practice considers the varied values and functions of elements such as time, sound, and knowledge. Recent curatorial projects include three touring exhibitions, Recast (2014), wnoondwaamin | we hear them (2016) and Carry Forward (2017). This is the first exhibition she has curated at the Textile Museum of Canada. Myers has an MFA in Criticism and Curatorial practice from OCAD University. She is Toronto and Port Severn based and is a member of Beausoleil First Nation.


Textile Museum of Canada
55 Centre Avenue
Toronto, ON, M5G 2H5

Textile Museum of Canada has a 40-year history of exploring ideas and building cultural understanding through the universal medium of textiles. Connecting international textile traditions to contemporary art and design, this national museum is one of Canada’s most engaging arts institutions welcoming thousands of visitors from across the country and around the world each year. The Museum’s permanent collection spans 2,000 years and consists of over 14,000 artifacts from about 200 countries and regions, uniquely positioning the Museum to speak to global culture as well as our increasingly global communities. A leader in the digitization of collections and interactive environments, the Textile Museum of Canada is recognized for its innovation in the development of landmark educational, research and creative initiatives.






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