Work of the Week: Red Willow

Date: Jun 20, 2018

In honour of National Indigenous Peoples Day, our Work of the Week for June 18 - 25 is Red Willow by George Littlechild.

National Indigenous Peoples Day will be held on June 21st, as a day for all Canadians to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. This special day is recognized on the summer solstice, as many generations of Indigenous peoples and communities have celebrated their culture and heritage on or near this day, the longest day of the year.

Artist’s Statement:

“I envision. I rely on the intuitive, the spiritual, and the emotional to tell stories through my art. I am a storyteller, a visualist, a conveyer of messages. I believe colours possess spiritual cleansing and purifying power. My art is charged with energy and colour. It is vibrant, magical, thus enabling the soul to travel.

My art has been there throughout my life’s journey.

A great deal of my work depicts transformation. In my world there are naturally ordered partnerships of people, animals, and the spirit world.

For us shamanic transformation can involve the transference of knowledge between the ancestors and the living often through animal or bird forms. Shamanic transformation relates to how the spiritual leader (shaman) communicates with the spirit world during a journey that is a search for a better way to be. Frequently the myth of transformation relates to curative and meditative customs of our society.

Red Willow depicts transformation, from human/animal during times of warfare. It is a sacred practice.” 

You can view more of George Littlechild's work in the AFA collection by exploring the AFA Virtual Museum.

AFA Virtual Museum