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Anishinaabensag Biimskowebshkigewag (Native Kids Ride Bikes)

Dylan Miner's avatar Dylan Miner

Anishinaabensag Biimskowebshkigewag (Native Kids Ride Bikes) is an ongoing project in which artist Dylan Miner collaborates with urban Native youth in an attempt to connect contemporary youth culture with traditional stories, art making and Indigenous knowledge. The bicycle as a signifier of transportation alludes to the fact that travelling and migration often were part of the traditional lifestyle of North American Native people, but it also refers to more global issues such as the need for more sustainable transportation. The bikes on exhibition in GRAM were made in Vancouver, Canada in cooperation with four local Aboriginal artists. The materials used in decorating the bikes reflect the Native heritage of each artist, while their colours correspond to the four sacred directions of the earth. Jeneen Frei Njootli, a Vuntut Gwitchin and graduate of Emily Carr University of Art + Design, whose family is from Old Crow, the only Yukon community north of the Arctic Circle, interpreted white or north. Trevor Angus, a Gitksan woodcarver originally from the Hazelton area, represented red or south. The bicycle representing black or west was decorated by Julian Napoleon, a Dane-zaa/Cree from northeastern British Columbia and project coordinator for Redwire Native Youth Media. And the yellow bicycle representing east was decorated by the Métis artist Gabrielle Hill. Special thank you to community partners W2 Media Cafe, Pedal Depot and Redwire Native Youth Media Society, and to participants Trevor Angus, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Gabrielle Hill, Julian Napoleon, Carrielynn Victor, Yvonne Prince, Agnes Jane Wisden and Andrew Wildbill.

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