You are here

Tesatawiyat – Come In

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Tesatawiyat Gallery Launch poster

See photo gallery from Tesatawiyat exhibit launch here.

WATERLOO, ON -- Tesatawiyat means Come in in the Mohawk language. In that spirit, the Grebel Gallery invites the public to come in to enjoy a community art project featuring 19 photographs of First Nations families in their homes.

The exhibit, fittingly named Tesatawiyat, is a partnership between the Grebel Gallery, artists Bryce Kanbara and Mina Ao, and the Waterloo Aboriginal Education Centre (WAEC) at St. Paul’s University College. The exhibition also features the painting Travelling Through by well-known Mohawk artist Shelley Niro, taken from her “Indian Summer” series.

“We're grateful that people trusted us, as strangers, to go into their homes, take photos and ask for statements about themselves,” reflected Kanbara. “Mina and I learned about the welcoming nature of Native people, their connections to their culture and history…as well as their diversity. At a recent public event in Hamilton, Chief Ava Hill of Six Nations spoke about the unhelpful tendency to adopt stereotypes of one another. ‘Get to know us,’ she said. This project is a small step towards doing that."

The exhibit is already attracting the attention of a variety of departments at the University of Waterloo. Professors are using Tesatawiyat as an opportunity to enrich student learning by bringing students into the space for teaching and reflection. The Grebel Gallery aspires to be a place to give voice to others and, in this mission, they invite other groups to come in, explore the content and themes presented, and become part of the community conversation.

“Through the work we do at the Waterloo Aboriginal Education Centre, it’s important that we build a strong supportive community for our students,” explained Shawn Johnson, Events Coordinator at WAEC. “We see that message within this exhibit, that we are made of many communities and that is a beautiful thing.”

Community members are invited to explore Tesatawiyat at a public launch reception on January 25th at 7PM. Members of the Waterloo Aboriginal Education Centre will welcome guests, artists will say a few words, and traditional fare will be shared, along with compelling art and good company. The reception is free, but registration is requested at www.grebel.ca/events.  The exhibition will be on display until April 13, 2017.

See online portfolio of Tesatawiyat.

Exhibit Hours:
Monday to Thursday: 8:30 am - 10:00 pm
Friday: 8:30 am - 6:00 pm
Saturday: 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Admission is free

140 Westmount Road N. Waterloo, ON N2G 2H6

The Grebel Gallery is located in the heart of the Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement (CPA) at Conrad Grebel University College. Totaling approximately 700 square feet, it is central to the CPA's strategic commitment to “peace and artistic expression.” The gallery curates and hosts peace-related exhibits to engage community members in a process of mutual learning and shared action.

The Waterloo Aboriginal Education Centre facilitates the sharing of Indigenous knowledge and provides culturally relevant information and support services for all members of the University of Waterloo community.

For more information contact:

Michelle Jackett
Coordinator, Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement
Conrad Grebel University College, University of Waterloo
140 Westmount Road North
Waterloo, Ontario  N2L 3G6
519-885-0220 x24221
mavanrassel@uwaterloo.ca
uwaterloo.ca/centre-peace-advancement/