Indian Country 52 #13 – The Red Dresses (MMIW)
“Red dresses blowing in the spring wind at the University of Toronto this week are a reminder of the estimated 1,200 missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada.
The REDress Project was started by Winnipeg-based Métis artist Jaime Black in 2010 and this is its first tour through Toronto.
More than 100 dresses, hanging from trees on six different locales across the downtown campus, make for an eerie visual — prompting passersby to wonder what they signified.
“Through the installation, I hope to draw attention to the gendered and racialized nature of violent crimes against Aboriginal women and to evoke a presence through the marking of absence,” Black said in her artist’s statement.
She said it was important her project — which has toured the country extensively and is part of a permanent exhibit at the Canadian Museum of Human Rights — come to Toronto so “one of the biggest public centres in Canada has a space to begin these conversations about creating safer spaces for Indigenous women.””
– The Star, Red dresses a visual reminder of missing, murdered Indigenous women.
My work is informed by and emerges from the places where the social, cultural, political and personal intersect. I use my work as a tool for exploring, connecting and questioning our current and historical socio-political framework and the ways in which we behave within that framework. I aim to provoke and incite dialogue around these issues by making work that provides viewers with the opportunity to approach them from a different perspective.
My current work: The REDress Project, focuses around the issue of missing or murdered Aboriginal women across Canada. It is an installation art project based on an aesthetic response to this critical national issue. The project seeks to collect 600 red dresses by community donation that will later be installed in public spaces throughout Winnipeg and across Canada as a visual reminder of the staggering number of women who are no longer with us. Through the installation I hope to draw attention to the gendered and racialized nature of violent crimes against Aboriginal women and to evoke a presence through the marking of absence.”
– The REDress Project, The REDress Project.
Download the 18″x24″ poster (.pdf), Indian Country 52 #13 – The Red Dresses (MMIW).
Indian Country 52
Indian Country 52 is a weekly project by David Bernie that uses the medium of posters that promote issues and stories in Indian Country. Follow the series: Indian Country 52
Creative Commons License
This work by David Bernie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. You may download, share, and post the images under the condition that the works are attributed to the artist.