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Keepers of the Light

Good Medicine, pendant by Shane Perley-Dutcher.

Featuring work from artists:
Emily Critch, Jerry Evans, Tara Francis,  Meagan Musseau,
Shane Perley,  Percy Sacobie, Nelson White,  Oakley Wysote Gray.

Curated by Emma Hassencahl-Perley

Keepers of the Light is a group exhibition of Indigenous artists who have been influenced by the land, their people, and are responding to the first light and the “awakening”. The exhibition will be on display from June 1st– June 29th at Eastern Edge Gallery to coincide with Petapan Indigenous Arts Symposium in St.John’s. Keepers of the Light will focus on the awakening of our identities, as we become conscious of our bodies, spaces, and histories – both social and cultural. Taking initiative to seek traditional knowledge, stories, and teachings – we are all are in the midst of unpacking and relearning our past. Realizing that there is tremendous richness in fusing the old with new mediums, technologies, and approaches, the exhibition will reaffirm Indigenous artists of the Atlantic region’s position in contemporary art. This exhibition will highlight Indigenous artists of the Atlantic Provinces who are making work that awakens their spiritual, cultural, visual, and political identities – combining traditional and contemporary ways of making.

Emma Hassencahl-Perley is Wolastoqiyik (people of the beautiful, bountiful river), commonly known as Maliseet. Originally from Tobique First Nation, NB, she currently lives and works in Fredericton, NB, as an emerging curator at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Mount Allison University (’17). Emma’s artwork explores themes of legislative identity; the truth about our shared history between Indigenous peoples and the Settler state and society of Canada; and her own identity as a Wolastoqiyik woman. Her art practice is rooted in painting and printmaking, however, in recent years it has shifted towards installation, beadwork, textiles and performance on top of her usual creation methods.