Skawennati, Intergalactic Empowerment Wampum Belt, 2019. Leather, artificial sinew, glass beads and nail polish.

Radical Stitch

Beading is one of the defining mediums of contemporary Indigenous art on this continent, and this landmark exhibition brings much-needed critical attention to the breadth and impact of this practice.

From early beads made of seeds and shells, to trade beads and computer pixels, Indigenous artists have long used beadwork to tell stories, honour loved ones, and celebrate beauty. As they embrace techniques and knowledge passed from previous generations, today’s Indigenous artists are using beading to address concerns and concepts related to history, decolonization and resistance.

Ranging from wearable art and portraiture, to installation and video, the works in Radical Stitch connect past and present, as they imagine new worlds. With humour, poignant testimony, and political and social commentary, this exciting exhibition examines the contemporary and transformative aspects of beading through the innovative works of artists and the tactile beauty of the medium. 

Organized and circulated by the MacKenzie Art GalleryThis project has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada. The MacKenzie receives ongoing support from the South Saskatchewan Community Foundation, Canada Council for the Arts, SaskCulture, City of Regina, University of Regina, and Saskatchewan Arts Board.

Curated by Sherry Farrell Racette, Michelle LaVallee and Cathy Mattes

Skawennati, Intergalactic Empowerment Wampum Belt, 2019. Leather, artificial sinew, glass beads and nail polish.

Skawennati, Intergalactic Empowerment Wampum Belt, 2019. Leather, artificial sinew, glass beads and nail polish, 13.7 x 75 x .5 cm. National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa. Purchased 2020. © Skawennati. Photo: NGC

Date

Friday, May 17, 2024 Sunday, October 20, 2024

Location

National Gallery of Canada Special Exhibitions Galleries (Level 2)
380 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1N 9N4
Canada