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Museum Blog

Artisan Spotlight: Nita McAdam

Artisan Spotlight: Nita McAdam

Posted in: Exhibits

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I’m from Big River First Nation in northern Saskatchewan and have been beading since I was twelve years old.  I had to learn to make myself new beadwork; it was a coming-of-age into my teenage years that I had to learn to make my own things.  I have learned different ways to bead and design beadwork over my lifetime.  I’ve always loved plains Cree style, and I know how to do lane stitch in rows.  Beading and sewing helps deal with modern stress and helps me connect with my traditional ways.

I have taught my oldest child how to bead, and I have a younger child who has started handling beads.  I want to keep the style of my lineage going with my children and others who admire the way I design and showcase my work.

Nita has created the buckskin dress and done the beading for the Women's Traditional Dance in Powwow! Ohcîwin The Origins. Have a peek at her work below.

Did you know? Buckskins are often trimmed with a fringe – originally a functional detail, to allow the garment to shed rain, and to dry faster when wet because the fringe acted as a series of wicks to disperse the water[.] They also served as a form of camouflage when hunting, by breaking up the outline of the wearer and allowing them to blend in with their background. (via Wikipedia)

Powwow! Ohcîwin The Origins

Ohcîwin is a Cree word meaning “The Origin” or telling of a story where something originated.

Powwow! Ohcîwin The Origins features 7 powwow dance styles, with full Regalia and craft work.  Curators and creators, Patrick Mitsuing and Marrisa Mitsuing, have gathered the stories, worked with the Artisans, and carefully built the Regalia for this exhibition.

This exhibition is on display at the Red Deer Museum + Art Gallery (MAG) until February 27, 2021. Book your visit today!

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