Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada—Wednesday, 13 April, 2022:

On 30 April 2022, The MacKenzie Art Gallery is set to open the most significant exhibition of contemporary Indigenous beading ever presented in North America—Radical Stitch. Gathering 48 artists across Turtle Island (North America), the collection challenges the narrative of traditional beading as relics of history by showcasing the continuous evolution of this thriving contemporary art medium. 

Curated by Sherry Farrel Racette, Michelle LaVallee, and Cathy Mattes, Radical Stitch examines the practice of beading and its relation to a tradition of making, exercised over thousands of years—connecting one artist to another. Displaying well-known names such as Ruth Cuthand, Jamie Okuma, Teri Greeves, Katherine Boyer, Dana Claxton, and Barry Ace, the artists in this collection reflect on beading as a place of encounter, knowledge transfer and acts of resistance—confronting centuries of historical oppression. 

Radical Stitch, featuring works both of and inspired by traditional regalia, illustrates the significance of powwows and the vibrant role they have in the beading community that continues to circulate Indigenous knowledge and ways of being in spite of historical suppression. Including a range of work from the customary to the contemporary, the selected pieces exemplify current and future directions of some of the most exciting and impressive practices. This landmark exhibition of nearly 100 works will bring much needed critical attention to the breadth and impact of beadwork, and invite audiences to immerse themselves in the political, creative, and artistic aspects of this practice. 

“Indigenous beading is one of our generation’s most exciting movements in contemporary art,” said John G. Hampton, Executive Director & CEO at the MacKenzie. “Rooted in cultural and territorial specificity, beadwork is of particular importance to this moment in contemporary cultural dialogues, and we are so pleased to be working with the top artists and curators in the field to realize this exhibition from diverse Indigenous perspectives.” 

This highly anticipated exhibition will also be accompanied by the Beading Together: Radical Stitch Symposium, hosted in partnership with Shushkitew Collective. On Saturday, 25 June, this full-day symposium will include artist-led hands-on beading circles, workshops, panel discussions, and conversation. Registration is currently at full capacity due to high demand, with virtual programming options to be made available.  

“TD is honoured to be able to support Radical Stitch with the Mackenzie Art Gallery”, said Stuart Keeler, Senior Curator, TD Art & Corporate Heritage Collections, TD Corporate Citizenship. “One of the key goals of the TD Ready Commitment, the bank’s corporate citizenship platform, is to contribute to initiatives that make the world a better, more inclusive place.  When we see ourselves represented in art, it helps create a sense of belonging. We also believe that art creates conversations between communities… the traditions and lived experiences shared by the artists from Indigenous Communities help foster a space of dialogue and reconciliation.” 

The Radical Stitch exhibition is presented by TD Ready Commitment. The exhibition will be on view in the Sim and Kenderdine Galleries at the MacKenzie Art Gallery from 30 April to 28 August 2022.  

 

ABOUT THE MACKENZIE  

The MacKenzie Art Gallery is Saskatchewan’s oldest public art gallery, and is committed to creating transformative experiences of the world through art. With a permanent collection that spans 5,000 years and nearly 5,000 works of art, we encompass both the University of Regina’s vast collection and one of Canada’s largest collections of Indigenous art, the Kampelmacher Memorial Collection. Through art, education, and immersive programming, the MacKenzie brings fresh perspectives that transform how people experience history, themselves, and each other.  

The MacKenzie is located in Wascana Park, Oskana Kâ’asastêki in Treaty Four territory, the traditional territory of the Cree, Saulteaux, Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota people, and the homeland of the Métis Nation. We are grateful for the support of the Mackenzie Art Gallery Operating Endowment Fund, at the South Saskatchewan Community Foundation, as well as the support of our core funders: the Canada Council for the Arts; SaskCulture; the City of Regina; the University of Regina; and the Saskatchewan Arts Board.  

 

MEDIA CONTACT  

Katie Wilson 

Communications Coordinator 

MacKenzie Art Gallery  

 

(306)-584-4250 ext. 4271 

 

Nico Williams, Indian’s Frozen Computer, delica beadwork, birch bark and porcupine quills, 2017. Courtesy of Indigenous Art Centre. Photo credit: Mike Patten.

All News