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Canadian artist Jordan Bennett created Tepkik to show the intersection of the artist’s Mi’kmaq ancestral and contemporary traditions. Mi’kmaq are a First Nations people Indigenous to the eastern seaboard of Newfoundland, Canada, and into the state of Maine. The title is a Mi’kmaq word for night, reflecting on our place in the galaxy.
Being able to tell one story from one Mi'kmaq person's perspective is exciting, and this is one story that's being told by our people right across the world. To make our presence as Mi'kmaq of Ktaqmkuk [Newfoundland] visual, but also in the public realm, is beautiful.
Jordan Bennett, Artist
Originally commissioned by Brookfield Place Toronto, artist Jordan Bennett's site-specific installation, Tepkik, draws on the Mi’kmaq petroglyph which depicts the Milky Way.
Historical references to the land, sky, and our galaxy are illuminated by Bennett’s handling of color, both traditional and pop, his interpretation of Mi’kmaq quillwork patterns and motifs and the use of contemporary materials.
Bennett reimagines reflective vinyl on aluminum typically associated with road signs – to evoke cultural markers of the past. The title Tepkik, a Mi’kmaq word for night, reflects on when we can visually see our place in the galaxy – bringing the stars and stories of our galaxy into view at any time of day.
Site-specific installation evoking Mi'kmaq cultural markers of the past and present
Accompanied by Canadian and U.S. First Nations and Native American musicians
Red Hawk Native American Arts Council hosted indigenous dance, storytelling and craft-making