My miracle, after seeking illumination is finding my authentic self. I’m connecting my art concepts of place and memory through Otahpiaaki. Otahpiaaki is a Blackfoot teaching where the sole and vamp of a moccasin come together. I realize that my life is an indigenous first contact sole from the swamps of Toisnot and Mattamuskeet. I’m the worn sole of my ancestors who walked on the black earth of stolen people on stolen land that gave birth to The Blues. But by grace and Divine Mercy the worn sole is now attached to a brand new vamp.
Like turning on a light the design for my part of the Seed 2 Runway Project is born. My project’s active status is shared with Mount Royal University through Spirit and Patti, and Red Crow Community College through Jeannie & Georgette.
Seed 2 Runway consists of four modules in accordance with the teachings of walking out “The Four Daughters” during each of their seasons. Knowledge of the “Four Daughters” was transferred to me by Pura Fe, my BFF Carolyn and her daughter Chana while we made regalia for Machapunga Pow Wows.
- Module 01 Posh Begins with Winter Solstice and consists of stitching and binding. Stitching Marks of Resistance >> Creating our own personal visual stories and stitching spiritual and cultural clothing to connect us with our ancestors. | Binding Up Sorrows >> Making bundles to dye while binding up the brokenness we’ve experienced in the past year. Bundle binding helps us to let go of stinking thinking that clogs our perception of our divine sacred nature by freeing us from colonizer limitations of scarcity and lack.
- Module 02 Ahskareen Begins with Spring Equinox and is all about Growing Color >> Connecting with the land beneath our feet by preparing the soil, planting seeds and nurturing plants. Growing color means getting our hands in the dirt and committing ourselves to the process of gardening. We being the natural dye process with what was collected and harvested in last years daughters of Sepoy and Maraskarin.
- Module 03 Sepoy Begins with the Summer Solstice and consists with Creating Medicine Cloth From Plants, Flowers, Fruits & Vegetables. Creating natural color from the bounty of what’s around us. We continue the process of creating medicine cloth with in season berries and flowers.
- Module 04 Maraskarin Begins with the Fall Equinox and is about harvesting color by harvesting ourselves. We dry dyestuffs to dye with in Ahskareen, and begin collecting fabric to stitch and use for dye bundles during Posh. We pick up black walnuts and process for dyeing during this season. We exhaust all dyestuffs by making soap, and preparing to bury all the binding materials from our bundles on the day of the Winter Solstice. The binding materials are strings connecting us to our ancestors.
And we begin again transformed by the process and lessons of the past 13 Moons ….