I move around a lot and work in and for many places across Turtle Island and beyond. I grew up with very limited knowledge of where I was, or who was displaced so that my grandparents and great grandparents could make a home. I now realize that my ancestors, and therefore I, benefited from the proceeds of land taken from Indigenous peoples, and that I and all settler Canadians continue to benefit from the illegal enforced displacement of Indigenous peoples. Working in culture, I have had to face the reality that the European art forms I have been trained in and continue to work in have been supported and celebrated in Canada with the intention of re-enforcing colonialism. I have committed to improving my own understanding of this history, and to actively pursuing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
The land on which I am currently situated, Tiohtià:ke, is unceded Indigenous territory – unceded meaning never ceded or legally signed away to the Crown or to Canada. The Kanien’kehá:ka Nation is recognized as the custodians of the lands and waters on which I am today. It is historically known as a gathering place for many First Nations. To discover more about Tiohtià:ke follow this link (here) and visit https://native-land.ca.