The artist’s gender fluid, time-travelling alter-ego, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle, is the narrator of this story, told through the lens of Indigenous resilience. Miss Chief leads us from New France and Confederation to the urban environment of Winnipeg’s North End and contemporary life on the reserve.
Shame and Prejudice: A Story of Resilience provides a searing critique of Canada’s colonial policies, past and present, on the occasion of the recent sesquicentennial. As Monkman explains, “The last 150 years—the period of Modernity—represents the most devastating period for First Peoples, including the signing of the numbered treaties, the reserve system, genocidal policies of the residential schools, mass incarceration and urban squalor.”
This exhibition features nearly 80 pieces, including Monkman’s own paintings, installations and sculptures, in dialogue with historical artifacts loaned from museums and private collections across Canada. MOA is the final stop for this critically acclaimed travelling exhibition, which has been on a multi-year, cross-country tour to nine cities.
Kent Monkman is a Canadian artist of Cree ancestry who works with a variety of media, including painting, film/video, performance, and installation. His work is known for its provocative reinterpretations of Romantic North American landscapes, and it explores themes of colonization, sexuality, loss and resilience—the complexities of historic and contemporary Indigenous experience.