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The Indigenous Cultural Corner

The Indigenous Cultural Corner, currently sponsored by Bouchier, was established at the Wood Buffalo Regional Library in 2014 as a space for people of all ages to gain a deeper appreciation and understanding of Indigenous history and culture.

The collection highlights and honours the many unique and diverse Indigenous experiences through a wide variety of formats, including audiobooks, DVDs, CDs, and print materials.

From well-established authors like Tomas King, Richard Wagamese, and Louise Erdrich, to the budding talents of Stephen Graham Jones and Tanya Tagaq, the Bouchier Indigenous Cultural Corner is packed with stories to be read.

The area also houses significant pieces, like the series of paintings titled “Our Families, Our Community” Simone McLeod, a Cree-Ojibwe artist and member of the James Smith Cree Nation. McLeod painted the entire 16 ft. mural in-house in 2014 after the funding was donated by Northeastern Alberta Aboriginal Business Association. At the end of her solo painting, she invited children from the community to finger-paint in the grass portion to represent our future leaders and our appreciation for Mother Earth’s gifts.

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A framed Métis sash was donated by McMurray Métis in 2015. McMurray Métis generously provided an explanation of the traditional and contemporary uses for the sash within the frame as a teaching resource. The sash is used by Métis people and is also shared with two other groups: the Eastern Woodland Indians, who were the first to wear the sash in the 19th century, and French Canadians during the 1837 Lower Canadian Rebellion.

In addition to the collections in the Bouchier Indigenous Cultural Corner, the space is used to hold programs, celebrations, and cultural events. The circular shape of the space honours the sacred teaching of the circle to encourage discussion and openness. Next time you are in the library, come and visit!

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Jessie Levesque
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