Beacon Project

Wejku’agamit > Owed

Challenging the systems that continue to oppress the Black and Indigenous People of Mi’kma’ki. “Wejku’agamit > Owed” Examines the racialized issues as a person of colour getting a parking ticket on the unceded Territory of the Mi’kmaq people. This project speaks out about just one system built on an European paradigm that has a distorted perception of itself when it comes to people of color that must be dismantled to achieve true equity... Stolen people do not owe their government for parking on stolen land, in fact, many are due for reparations.

Read More

Through the process of applying to a festival, supported by federal and municipal funding, to pay artist and material fees and receiving what is owed back, overdue reparations for each ticket is gained. The redistribution of wealth within society needs to be examined and scrutinized for a deeper understanding to show how the present and past systems have benefited from the oppressed people living in what is referred to as North America.

This project uses the art of jewelry and photography in a multidisciplinary way to achieve its objectives. I’thandi uses African and Indigenous inspired motifs as the structure for jewellery pieces which enriches the bond and experience of a cohesive community, which together, continuously feel the effects of colonialism. Not only is there a connection through similar life experiences, these communities have a long intertwined heritage. Many share the same lineage that has been lost, forgotten, ignored or suppressed. Setting the remnants of these tickets throughout the negative space within these pieces, demonstrates the delegacy between value, materiality, and oppression. Photographing Black and Indigenous people wearing the finished pieces further shows the literal burdens placed upon each person while navigating this postcolonial environment.

The unjustifiable issuing of parking tickets given out by HRP are perpetuating a cycle of ignorance, and complacency, on a personal and a governmental level. Furthermore, the residual effects perpetuated by this systemic behaviour, without reimbursement, is an affront to the Indigenious and Black communities, many of whom can trace their lineage to the Mi'kmaq First Nations. Their inherent rights as custodians of this unceded territory is a violation of epic proportions. Analyzing the simplest of laws that are currently enforced in a society with a governing force which directly benefits from stolen land, emphasizes how broken our world is. We all need to be awakened from this torporific state and arise with a new vision of governance and policy implementation based on protecting the rights, dignity and well-being of all its citizens, especially those who have been historically disenfranchised through unfair practices and biases predicated on Race and Culture.

Echolocation is very much about navigating within an environment to survive. How is survival achieved if every aspect of the environment has been set up for some to fail and others to succeed? How can one locate themselves in a system that does not provide support? The overburden and knowledge of a government who ignores the real issues that could help eliminate the imbalances in a society that would drastically change the way of life for someone of colour, and many other racialized people, is heavy. Every tool, idea, and expression must be used to break the cycle, and to awaken the activism in collective allies, and those who are socially dormant, from an outdated, antiquated, and inherently corrupt European paradigm.

Activism Installation