As part of our commitment to give 10% back to community, we were so excited to be able to support three $100 bursaries through our small-arts business; this is our way of giving back in 2021, especially since the pandemic has hit Artists the hardest. With the support of these funds, these three Artists can continue practicing and be supported financially; even though it is just a small amount, this financial support is so needed in the Indigenous Arts community and can make a difference to someone's practice.
We wanted to offer this bursary since we have been supported so greatly through the pandemic by you all here online, whether you bought an item through our shop, donated to our buymeacoffee, or just shared or liked our posts. It’s kept us going financially and mentally, which was hard during this pandemic.
If you applied to this fund but were not selected, please know that you can always apply again and be sure to follow us on Instagram or Facebook to ensure you get the details about how to apply for the next round of bursaries!
Anyways - the good part! Here are the 3 selected Artists and a little bit about each Artist and how to find their work!------------------------------
Willie Poll - Children’s Author/Writer
A proud member of the Metis Nation of Ontario, but currently living on unceded Lil Wat territory in what’s known colonially as Pemberton BC. Willie is an Indigenous author and my art is writing rhyming children’s books about Indigenous issues, culture, and power. My first book comes out this spring and I am currently fundraising for my second book which will raise funds for anti pipeline projects and support Indigenous water defenders.
Their current children’s book titled Minnow is about a little girl who shapeshifts into a water creature and goes on an adventure with a little ocean fish. She sees the tragedies of human activity and comes back to her community to help defend her traditional territory and save the sea. This story is important for so many reasons - firstly, representation matters and having Indigenous characters accurately portrayed in children’s books is SO needed. The story also touches on environmental issues and the tragic barriers that Indigenous people face just to protect their lands. The money being raised will go towards recruiting an Indigenous artist to work with them to illustrate the story and bring words to life.
follow them on Instagram: @willieandpugdolife
Anali Herr - Visual Artist, Traditional Artist
A nēhiyaw (cree)/Irish artist, her family comes from Treaty 6; Sweetgrass First Nations, SK.. She is a descendant of the last hereditary Chief Samuel Swimmer (yah yah num). I graduated Ontario College of Art and Design University with my Bachelours of Fine Arts majoring in Drawing and Painting in 2008. She has always been creative, their hands always find a way to make objects and art. Being classically trained in a post secondary setting has given them the language I need to express myself. Their passion currently is beading; it's been lost to their family and would seem that she is one of the only to take up this ancestral artform. My work has always dealt with "women's crafts" in multimedia forms, taking my many skills and applying them to flat surfaces.
In her words of how the funds will help her artistic practice - “Artistic endeavors are always big dreams with shoestring budgets. My newest project that I have been planning is to bead cree syllabics onto birch bark paper. I'm the first to try learning our ancestors' tongue in two generations. I envision building a vocabulary of these words and mounting them on pine boards for display.”
follow them on Instagram: @herr_knots
Summer Tyance -
Summer Tyance is an Anishinaabekwe from Gull Bay First Nation but grew up in Thunder Bay, Ontario. She is currently a student, poet, singer, drummer, and artist. Her art practice consists mainly of landscape and Anishinaabe Woodlands acrylic pieces. She has been painting since she was sixteen and has started beadwork within the last four years.
In her own words of how the funds will help her practice - “As a current student, I often struggle financially to obtain funds to dedicate towards my art. I often only have enough for food and rent. I have a few painting and beading projects in the works but lack the materials such as thread, paint, and canvases to complete. Art is medicine and healing to me, but also a source of income that I need.”
Their main area of interest is Two-spirit & queer advocacy / representation as well as revitalization of culture and traditions.
follow them on Instagram: @summertyance
see their website: berrytyance.com
We hope you enjoyed learning more about these Artists and would like to thank all applicants for applying to our fund or sharing it with friends. We hope to offer more bursaries in the future and continue building our community of like-minded Artists for you to get to know!