Project intentions and explanation
My name is Carrie Allison and I am an artist currently pursuing my Master of Fine Art degree at NSCAD University. I am of Cree/Metis and settler descent, an interdisciplinary artist in the process of reclaiming my ancestry lost through the colonial system. My maternal family hails from High Prairie, Alberta. For the past year I have been incorporating beading into my artistic practice as a way to become more familiar and comfortable with my maternal ancestry. For my thesis project I have decided to bead two rivers that I am connected to: the Heart River in Alberta and the Fraser River in BC. These rivers are important to me and to my ancestors. I look at the history and practice of beading as an act of respect and honouring; by beading these rivers I am honouring the ancestors’ gifts to us.
To connect me to the space I have been living on for the past 7 years I wanted to honour a river in Nova Scotia. One of the most important rivers here, the Shubenacadie, is under threat: Alton Gas proposes to create two salt caverns to store natural gas underground, which would result in huge quantities of highly concentrated salt brine to enter the Shubenacadie. The local Mi’kmaq community, along with its allies, has been actively protesting the project, saying the salt caverns will destroy the ecosystem of the river and everything that relies on it. I wanted the beading of this third river of this project to be a community-based process that might benefit the people most closely linked to the river, so I have decided to facilitate a beading of the Shubenacadie River through community members and anyone else who wishes to be a part of it. This project is meant to honour the river with many hands.
Beading kits will include everything you will need to bead your portion of the river. In the beading kits you will find: two needles, string, beading felt with your segment of the river pattern drawn on it, beads and an envelope with a return address. Once you have completed your portion of the river you will carefully fold the beading into the envelope and send back to me.
The beading kits are organized at 3 levels of difficulty of: Beginner, Intermediate, and Master/Advanced
Beginners will have the opportunity to learn to bead; each kit will contain guidelines and YouTube links that will give you a step-by-step account of how to start beading one simple section of the river pattern.
Intermediate beaders have beaded before, but would like the opportunity to work on a more complex part of the river pattern.
A Master or Advanced beader has beaded a lot and would love a more challenging section of the river pattern. This can mean being responsible for a larger mass of the river pattern, e.g. a lake)
I will host beading circles/workshops at the Treaty Space Gallery at NSCAD’s port campus (1107 Marginal Rd, Halifax, NS B3H 4P7) every Tuesday evening from February 20th to March 13th, with the possibility of more dates being added later. These sessions will give anyone an opportunity to ask questions about the project, receive a beading kit and learn to bead if they are a beginner. These events are meant to be sharing circles; people can come together and share beading skills, as well as stories and thoughts around the history and plight of the Shubenacadie River.
The beading circle/workshop dates are:
February 20, 6-9pm
February 27, 6-9pm
March 6, 6-9pm
March 13, 6-9pm
PLEASE EMAIL ME IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO GET INVOLVED! firstname.lastname@example.org