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Water Is Life

Isaac Murdoch
Price
$40

These prints were produced  to help raise funds for the Onaman Collective, a community based social arts and justice organization, interested in helping Indigenous communities, particularly youth, with reclaiming the richness and vibrancy of their heritage including traditional arts, but with a contemporary spin. “Our collective combines land-based contemporary art creation with traditional arts, anishinaabemowin immersion, and Elders and traditional knowledge and land based practices. We believe the arts are the most powerful medium to create positive social change within our communities for the future.”

Pronounced ah-nah-mun, The Onaman Collective was formed in November of 2014 by Isaac Murdoch, Christi Belcourt and Erin Konsmo. “We care so deeply about the youth and the future of our communities, each of us in our own way has been using our art for social change. We formed the collective for the express purpose of finding ways to converge land-based art creation with traditional knowledge, youth, Elders and Anishnaabemowin and Cree languages.”

Nimkii Aazhibikong (pronounced Nim-key Ah-zh-ih-bih-coo-ng) is a place where youth and Elders come to connect to the land, each other and to pass down the language and traditional knowledge to the next generations.

Nimkii Aazhibikong means Village of Thunder Mountain. It’s the name given by Elders to a year-round Ojibway Art, Culture and Language Revitalization Camp being built by a community of youth, Elders and organizers located north of Elliot Lake, Ontario within traditional Anishinaabeg territory.

Nimkii Aazhibikong is an independent Indigenous led camp that is focused on connecting young people with elders for arts and cultural land-based teachings. The camp is an Ojibway language revitalization camp for youth that is working towards producing the next generation of fluent speakers on the land. Guided by elders, it is also a camp for cultural resurgence of sustainable Indigenous practices and restoration of traditional Indigenous land and resource protection and management.

Right now Indigenous languages including Anishinaabemowin along the North Shore of Lake Huron are in crisis. Many of the speakers are Elders and many communities have no children speaking the language. We want to inspire the next generation and encourage fluency in the language. The Elders have told us this can only be fully realized while on the land.

Isaac Murdoch, whose Ojibway name is Manzinapkinegego’anaabe / Bombgiizhik is from the fish clan, and is from Serpent River First Nation. Isaac grew up in the traditional setting of hunting, fishing and trapping. Many of these years were spent learning from Elders in the northern regions of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Isaac is well respected as a storyteller and traditional knowledge holder. For many years he has led various workshops and cultural camps that focuses on the transfer of knowledge to youth. Other areas of expertise include: traditional ojibway paint, imagery/symbolism, harvesting, medicine walks, & ceremonial knowledge, cultural camps, Anishinaabeg oral history, birch bark canoe making, birch bark scrolls, Youth & Elders workshops, etc. He has committed his life to the preservation of Anishinaabe cultural practices and has spent years learning directly from Elders.

These Graphics have been used around the world by Indigenous led movements for land reclamation and environmental protection.

Check out more designs here.

Printed in solidarity by Justseeds member Jesse Purcell.