Indigenous Art 2021 Artist, Ziibiikwans
Welcome to Woodland Cultural Centre’s Indigenous Art 2021 Exhibition.
Established in 1975, this is one of the longest running multi-media exhibitions that provide artists an opportunity to exhibit and sell their work in a fine art gallery setting. WCC is pleased to announce the return of this annual Juried Exhibition and we can’t wait to share the selected works with the public. Indigenous Art 2021 will be running September 11 – November 20, 2021.
Meet Artist, Ziibiikwans
Ziibiikwans is an aspiring interdisciplinary artist specializing in digital illustration. Her passion lies in expressing and exploring her identity as a young, urban, biracial, Indigenous (Ojibwe) woman.
The kinds of work that Ziibiikwans creates are mainly digital and ink illustrations. On the side she experiments with mixed media physical crafts and acting. She recently starred in a short film called Native Enough that premiered at Nuit Blanche 2020.
Her inspiration lies in learning and sharing traditional Ojibwe teachings, revitalizing and learning her ancestral Ojibwe language and sharing her personal history and personality. She has a deep desire to expand and explore what it means to be a young Indigenous person in today’s climate.
Ziibiikwans has no training in the arts and is entirely self taught. Art has always been a very important healing and coping mechanism for Ziibiikwans, and this practice of self care has allowed Ziibiikwans to safely reflect on their identity and explore their Ojibwe teachings and histories through art meaningfully.
Education and reflection have been the main influences for Ziibiikwans. Learning about Indigenous history in Canada and the modern complexities of identity surrounding Indigenous sovereignty.Understanding the history and impacts of In digenous marginalization The frustration and layers that come to understanding the relationship of oneself and their community.
Ziibiikwans currently resides and works in Tkoronto. Her career focuses on working with Indigenous communities across Eastern Canada to manage and coach self-development and cultural programming for Indigenous youth. She grew up in Wallaceburg, Ontario and spent most of her summers working and living on her reserve, Walpole Island First Nations.
Ziibiikwans ndishnkaaz. Mukwa dodem. Bkwejwanong ndoonjiba.
My name is Little Stream. I am Bear Clan. I am from Walpole Island First Nations.
I am interested in embracing, depicting, and challenging my Ojibwe culture through digital illustration, inking, fashion, language, music and stories.
A main influence on my art is my culture and identity and how they connect and disconnect. For instance, rejecting specific cultural norms and expectations and creating a space that explores what that new Ojibwe culture can look and feel like. An example is a piece titled “Digital Beading Kwe,” which is a digital illustration done entirely in pointillism to replicate and mimic the process of beading. I wanted to challenge the common Indigenous art forms and find where they can meet in spaces they haven’t before.
The themes I am exploring are traditional vs. modernity. Contrasting themes are particularly enticing to me because they connect to the frustrations I have with my biracial identity of being Caucasian and Ojibwe.
My mixed identity has been a crisis I’m constantly working through. I am split in half with my passion for my culture; one half desperately wants to be everything it wants me to be- wear a skirt to ceremony always, put tobacco down every morning, don’t drink…
The other half of me knows that I am outcast because of my mixed blood and so in my art I push against these cultural norms. For instance, I illustrated a comedic study of a scene from Akira where someone is looking at my status and me and trying to connect the dots because I don’t look stereotypically “indigenous”.
The kinds of materials & platforms I work with include Procreate, Photoshop, Adobe Premiere, clothing, leather paint, beads, leather, feathers, natural raw materials, and in some cases animals – for instance a turtle shell.
I am looking to create more meaningful, layered digital illustrations. I also want to continue to work with painting, inking and fashion.
Ziibiikwans’ Featured Artwork
13” x 13” x 1” / 33.02cm x 33.02cm x 2.5cm
13” x 13” x 1” / 33.02cm x 33.02cm x 2.5cm
If you’re interested in purchasing Ziibiikwans’ Art, download our Art Sales Form Here