The Art of Mi’kmaw Basketry

photographs by Holly Brown Bear

edited by shalan joudry

The work of nine preeminent contemporary Mi’kmaw artists

Mi’kmaw artists are creating a wide range of imaginative and beautiful work using the skills and traditions of basketry weaving given to them by their elders and ancestors. In this book, nine artists present their work and their stories in their own words. Their unique artistic practices reflect their relationships to the natural world around them and their abilities to create unique and beautiful objects using a mix of traditional and contemporary materials and forms.

Each artist's account of their background and practice is introduced by editor shalan joudry. Their words stand alongside examples of their art, photographed in their studios by HOLLY BROWN BEAR.

Award-winning filmmaker and activist Catherine Anne Martin's introduction to the book offers a history of the art form and its cultural importance. This book is a milestone in creating awareness of and celebrating a group of important contemporary artists working today in Mi’kma'ki, the traditional territory which embraces Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and portions of Quebec.

Featured artists:

Peter J. Clair, Elsipogtog First Nation, New Brunswick
Virick Francis, Eskasoni First Nation, Nova Scotia
Stephen Jerome, Gesgapegiag, Quebec
Della Maguire, Glooscap First Nation, Nova Scotia
Frank Meuse, L'sitkuk First Nation (Bear River), Nova Scotia
Margaret Pelletier, We'koqma'q First Nation, Nova Scotia
Sandra Racine, Elsipogtog First Nation, New Brunswick
Nora Richard, Lennox Island, Prince Edward Island
Ashley Sanipass, Indian Island, New Brunswick

About the Authors

shalan joudry
shalan joudry

shalan joudry is a Mi'kmaw mother, poet, author, playwright, oral storyteller and ecologist. shalan is passionate about bringing oral Mi’kmaw stories to a new generation of listeners, as well as helping other Mi'kmaq find their voice. She is the author of two collections of poetry and a play. shalan lives in her home territory of Kespukwitk (southwest Nova Scotia) with her family in their community of L'sitkuk (Bear River First Nation).

HOLLY BROWN BEAR is an Indigenous photographer and visual creative based in New where. With five years of specializing in portraiture, she strives to bring out the beauty and personality of her subjects. As a proud member of the Wabanaki community, she takes every opportunity to use her skills to highlight the beauty in her culture and to show the work being done towards social justice reform for her people.

Subjects (BISAC)


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