My piece, “Bloodroot”, depicts a young aboriginal deeply connected with the earth, but who feels the weight of responsibility for the harmful actions of others in the past and present.
The bloodroot plant tied to the subject has historically been used by aboriginals to make face paint, medicine, and poison. I’ve found the equilibrium between harming and healing fascinating, and felt it appropriate when exploring the theme of our modern relationship with nature.
Though we all share an innate connection with nature and are dependent on it for survival, an astonishing abuse is incurred upon it for the sake of human enterprise, luxury, and ultimately avarice. Our earth has been damaged by many before us, and the choice to perpetuate the cycle or take steps to repair the damage is placed upon each new generation. The deterioration of the earth is synchronous with that of innocence; a tremendous burden is forced upon our children and they suffer the consequences of our injustices.
My piece stands to create a dialogue of responsibility for our actions towards our planet. We have the means to restore nature, to change society and heal the wounds wrought in the past. “Bloodroot” is as much for the current generation as it is for new ones: if we take responsibility for our kinship with the earth, the inheritance we leave our children need not be one of entropy and sorrow.
Wasauksing First Nation
Six Nations of the Grand River Territory