I just got back to Montréal after my three month research and collection trip in Manitoba. What a great summer it was! I have learned so many things and am inspired to explore the possibilities of this time I was given to immerse myself in the place and its’ people. As a Franco-manitoban, it was an interesting experience to go back home and to have time to investigate my own heritage – where it comes from and how it has evolved over the centuries. Below is a slideshow of photos taken from the room I was using as a studio space over the summer. You can see here pieces of the many of the methods I decided to utilize to create my work. This includes collage, pinhole photography, video, writing, audio recording, digital photography, leather working, etc…
I went to Manitoba this summer to explore what it means to be Francophone living in a minority situation in Canada and have only just begun to process all the meanings that are part of this idea. It is like one those situations where you know how you feel about your own identity but you’re not sure how others feel – you want to make sure that your perspective is not completely off base – so you talk to a lot of people, i’ve interviewed at least 30 people since January 2011 and expect to do more along the way. This also helped me to be more sensitive towards the issues at hand. I hope that the resulting work will also show the complexity of what it is like to maintain a distinct cultural identities within a minority context. My intent is to broaden our understanding of ourselves as Canadians with complex and hybrid identities and to use this as a way of promoting our strengths rather than our weaknesses.
If this kind of thing interests you – definitely check out this book by John Ralston Saul – “A Fair Country:Telling Truths About Canada”. http://www.johnralstonsaul.com/eng/non_fiction_books.php?mc=A%20Fair%20Country:%20Telling%20Truths%20about%20Canada