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Nitayānān Kīyāpic Ōta (We’re Still Here)
Niwī- atamiskawāw nikāwi, Diana Morrisseau. Wīna kā nīkāniskākowāk, kā isi wīcītowāk nisīmak akwa nimis. Wīna kā kiskenītāk ininīmowin kākī- isi onastāk ōma isīcikewin anoc. Mitoni ninisitayinawāw anoc akwa nikistenimāw nikāwi, ininīmowinihk isi. Akwa nīsta ta atoskātamān ekota isi ōma isīcikewin kawi ati nikānōtayikowāk, asici nōtāwi, Marshall Morrisseau. Tapwe kīhci kinanāskomitināwaw.
I want to acknowledge my mother, Diana Morrisseau, the Matriarch of my family and whose knowledge of the N dialect has been instrumental in creating this exhibition. I address this directly to her in our Native language of Cree to show my commitment to learning Cree moving forward through immersion alongside my father, Marshall Morrisseau.
Nitayānān Kīyāpic Ōta translates to We’re Still Here and as a digital artist, I aim to create artwork that not only utilizes the N Dialect to depict Cree Syllabics, but to share how beautiful the language is. I create artwork using the digital art medium to connect back to my cultural identity, but also my artistic practice which combines the contemporary with the traditional. Through the cyclical nature of time and space, I have created artwork that documents my past, present, and future.
The following artwork titled: Continuum (2022, digital medium), arranged in a linear format that uses color to create cyclical time, in that there are no definite beginnings or endings. These experiences have provided a connection to my cultural identity as an Indigenous person and this idea guides my art practice as I continue to make artwork inspired by my culture and my lifelong goal of learning the Cree language.
The following artwork digitally is purposeful and connects to the overarching theme of the exhibition. As an Indigenous person I have been held as an afterthought. That we, as Indigenous peoples do not exist, and are a relic of the past.