A new work of art on display at Confederation Centre Art Gallery in Charlottetown puts a face on people whose lives have been forever altered by family members and friends who have gone missing.
“We have unveiled a very precious piece of art that is both substantially moving and memorable,” says Aboriginal Women’s Association of PEI (AWAPEI) President Matilda Ramjattan. “This is not just a project; it is ground-breaking work and sacred art that will help heal those affected by missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. I get tears in my eyes every time I think about this project and the lives that were taken.”
Inuit artist Bronson Jacque was commissioned by AWAPEI to create a painting honouring not only missing and murdered Indigenous women, but the family and loved ones left behind.
“It was very important to me to show that these missing and murdered Indigenous women are still here with us, in the hearts and minds of their families and loved ones,” explains Jacque. “That’s why each person in the mural is holding an object that belonged to their loved one, or a photo. But beyond that, I wanted the piece to reverse the colonial gaze… to take the power back, which is why each loved one is looking directly at those who gaze upon them.”
The as-yet-unnamed mural is on display in the gallery entrance stairwell until December 31.