Talking Earth with Santee Smith


19/06/2023, 12:00 pm

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Talking Earth with Santee Smith ’94, ’05

Join us for a lunch hour talk with award-winning artist, dancer, choreographer, McMaster graduate, and McMaster Chancellor Santee Smith as she gives a talk about her family’s work with pottery, her artistic practice, and its connection to cultural and ecological knowledge.

Santee will discuss how her artistic work/life and creative process take inspiration from her Rotinohnsyónni family legacy, and how her vision to create and move in alignment with Onkwehónwe’néha (our way of life, language) and to Ka’satsténhsera’kówa Sa’oyé:ra is shaped.

A graphic advertising an event entitled, ‘Talking Earth with Santee Smith ’94, ’05.’ It features a picture of Santee Smith holding a ceramic pot with an orange light shining on her. Don’t miss this opportunity as Santee Smith shares images and stories about her ceramic sculpture, Talking Earth, and how she is inspired as a multidisciplinary artist to create works that have a cultural and ecological connection.

Talking Earth is a permanent public artwork that was commissioned by the Gardiner Museum in Toronto and is installed at its entrance. This piece by Santee was the product of the collaborative work done at McMaster’s Studio Arts and debuted in June 2022 at the International Ceramic Art Fair. The etched ceramic sculpture is inspired by a Rotinohnsyonni four-cornered earthen pottery vessel. It is fractured and partially reconstructed, with light shining through the cracks between the broken shards. The vessel symbolizes the disruption and trauma caused by colonization, including the legacy of the residential school system, assimilative policies imposed on womxn, and the crisis of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Womxn and Girls. Moving toward intactness, the vessel evokes the process of re-assembling culture, memory, and ancestral knowledge.

Register here

On June 20 and June 21, Santee Smith and Semiah Smith will be giving a free public performance in the outdoor plaza of the Gardiner Museum highlighting the sculpture, Talking Earth. For more information on this performance, please click here