The work of Fort William’s Christian Chapman was displayed at the Thunderbird Aboriginal Arts, Culture and Entrepreneur Centre in Toronto in late-November.
Chapman produced the work during an artist-in-residency program in Finland in April. Chapman and his partner Jean Marshall, a Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug artist, travelled to Kaamanen in northern Finland to learn about the Sami culture, artwork and crafts.
“It’s beautiful work,” Chapman said. “We got to see a lot of their traditional art while we were in Lapland.”
Chapman and Marshall also visited builders of traditional boats and sleighs while in Lapland.
“The traditional Sami boats ... are like maybe a rowboat but a little bit more streamlined,” Chapman said. “And their sleighs are — the Sami people have their own way of designing things -–- very unique in the way things are made for sure.”
Chapman completed a series of paintings and Marshall completed some beadwork during the program, which included artists from Hong Kong, Belgium, Spain, New York and Washington, D.C.
His work displayed at the Toronto exhibition was included in Aanikoobijigani Gikinoohamaagewinan: Noonkom ishinamowinan Ancestral Teachings: Contemporary Perspectives, which featured the work of 10 Aboriginal artists from across Canada.
Chapman planned to head across the Pacific Ocean to New Zealand from Nov. 28-Dec 21 to learn a new printmaking technique through funding from the Ontario Arts Council.
“It’s going to be a pretty eye-opening experience,” Chapman said. “From what I hear, it’s going to be in the subtropics. It’ll be a lot warmer down there than here, for sure.”
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