‘Segregation: The Antithesis of Art’

“‘Indigenous’ {‘Siberian settler’} activists in Canada have forced the cancellation of an art show in Toronto that drew direct inspiration from ‘indigenous’ art. 

“Six years ago, the Canadian painter Amanda PL traveled to Thunder Bay in Ontario to study art education at Lakehead University. There, she became entranced with a lush, surrealistic form of Anishinabe painting known as the Woodlands style. When she returned home to Toronto, where she was born and raised, Amanda PL began to paint Woodland paintings. Next month, she was to have her first solo exhibition, at the new ‘Visions Gallery’ in the Leslieville district of Toronto.

“That show, however, has been canceled because of accusations of ‘cultural appropriation’ leveled against Amanda PL…

“…Speaking by phone from Toronto, she says she is

“just Canadian”

and offers freely that she has no Native American roots. However, her time studying in Thunder Bay led to an artistic love affair with the Woodlands style of painting. Her instructors encouraged that affair.

“I had blessings from a lot of aboriginal people,” she tells me.

Norval Morrisseau’s painting ‘Androgyny’ (PHOTO: Adrian Wyld – The Canadian Press)

“Her main inspiration is the painter Norval Morrisseau, who was Anishinabe. However, Amanda PL argues, his bright paintings, with their semi-abstracted shapes, borrowed from the European stained-glass tradition. In other words, all art is predicated on “appropriation”, which may just be a more loaded word for “influence”.

“Amanda PL says there was never an attempt to deceive ‘Visions’.

“They knew…that I wasn’t aboriginal. They didn’t see any problem with that at the time,” she says.

“It was only after an email went out, she says, and outrage started to build, that ‘Visions’ decided to cancel the show.

‘The Lake’, Amanda PL

“That {racist} outrage has been strong.

“What she’s doing is essentially ‘cultural genocide’, because she’s taking his stories and retelling them, which bastardized it down the road,” one artist of Chippewa heritage told ‘CBC News’…

“At issue in the cultural appropriation debate is whether any group of people can “own” a set of tropes, ideas or images. Critics of the cultural appropriation concept argue that art cannot be hemmed in by cultural sensitivities and ownership claims. To this group, borrowing is a form of tribute and recognition, as, for example, when ‘white’ jazz musicians play the music of Louis Armstrong…
{Or when ‘black’ classical musicians play Beethoven…}

“As for Amanda PL, she remains undeterred. “This is my style,” she says. She understands why the gallery canceled her show, though she’s irked by that decision.

“It would be nice if they did back me. But they didn’t,” she says.

ALEXANDER NAZARYAN, Newsweek, 5/5/17


Feature IMAGE: https://www.facebook.com/480339598749516/photos/a.482228705227272.1073741829.480339598749516/1115666588550144/?type=3

COMMENT: “…Choking out legitimate artists, no matter how they paint or sing or dance or assemble, is NEVER the answer. The answer is not to tell this woman she has no right to be inspired by another artist. Art, literature, dance and music would CEASE TO EXIST without appropriation/homage/inspiration.

“The actual answer is to give more opportunities to artists in all areas, and from all backgrounds. If she shows, people who didn’t know about the Woodland style would learn about it and potentially seek it out. But telling people they can’t be inspired by another culture is self-defeating and ignores that that’s how great art comes into existence. Shakespeare appropriated, Picasso appropriated. So do hip hop and rap ‘artists’ today.

“And bottom line, trying to censor others’ freedom of expression never comes from a place of power, nor does it create power. Get out there and create and show your own work. Triumph by being better. With the internet and social media there’s never been a more promising time for less-wealthy artists to get themselves seen.”

Chippewa race activist Jay Soule says ‘artistic appropriation’ is a form of ‘cultural genocide.’ (Photo: CBC)

Artist confronted by Race activist:
AUDIO: https://soundcloud.com/cbchereandnow/art-debate

Amanda PL (PHOTO: Facebook)

“I just tried to learn all I could about the Aboriginal culture, their teachings, their stories, and I’ve tried to capture the beauty of the art style and make it my own by drawing upon elements of nature within Canada that have meaning to me,” Amanda PL told ‘CBC Toronto’ in an interview Friday.

“She was surprised by the reaction when her exhibit was announced, especially online.

“A lot of the Aboriginal people had issues with me not being native.… I feel like they think that I’m taking away from the culture, but really I’m not,” PL said.

I think it’s a shame to say that an artist can’t create something because they’re not from that race,” she said.

That’s like saying any other culture can’t touch something like abstract art unless you’re ‘white’, or you can’t touch cubism art.”

“PL said she’s never intentionally led anyone to believe that she herself is Indigenous…

“I always tell people that I’m a Canadian artist,” she said…

“Asked if she would consider no longer painting in the Woodlands style after reactions like that of Soule’s, PL said she will continue.

“This just happens to be the style that I’m drawn towards at this time. This is how I choose to express myself and this is how I choose to continue to paint,” PL said.”

–‘Toronto gallery cancels show after concerns artist ‘bastardizes’ Indigenous art’,
Shanifa Nasser, CBC News, April 28, 2017



“The work of Toronto painter Amanda PL is infused with bright colours and bold outlines often associated with an ‘indigenous’ {‘Siberian settler’} art style.

“But for many of those familiar with the ‘Woodland School of Art’, as the genre is also known, it smacks of ‘cultural appropriation’ by a young artist with no ‘claim to the tradition’ {‘Wrong skin colour’}.

“Outrage over Amanda PL’s work has renewed debate over who has the ‘right’ to use and profit from specific customs.
{‘Rights’ are legal principles, and it is obvious that she has a legal ‘right’ to do what she is doing…}

“It’s a decades-old ‘problem’ {It has only been considered a ‘problem’ by chauvinists and racists…} that is only gradually being ‘understood’ in a field where ideas and images are continually borrowed, traded and reinvented, say observers.

“B.C. lawyer Vanessa Udy says the broader public seems to be becoming more sensitive to possible cultural slights.
{There is no indication of that whatsoever. Virtually every ‘cultural appropriation’ incident is a single activist individual using social media to get immediate publicity from politically-correct media. For the most part, the ‘broader public’ regards this issue as nonsense in a civilization that is a mix of multiple cultural choices that anyone should feel free to choose from…}

“But the onus of identifying them falls on the person who finds it offensive, and that can be difficult to determine and articulate at times.

“There’s no easy formula to apply when ‘feelings are hurt’ — Udy notes each case requires a ‘nuanced evaluation’ {from a lawyer like her, of course}.

“Is it a person from a group who is in power over a group that is more dispossessed?

{Besides the neo-Marxist rhetoric, notice the complete focus on the ‘group’ to which people belong, even though she’s discussing an INDIVIDUAL’S feelings. The legal problem begins here:
https://canadiansforlegalequality.wordpress.com/2016/03/08/the-strange-case-of-canadian-legal-equality/ }

“Does the commodification of their culture put down their culture? Will it create negative stereotypes in the eyes of others?”

explains Udy, an intellectual property lawyer who returned to school after seven years of practice to study {the fraudulent field of} ‘aboriginal law’.

“That’s part of the problem of ‘cultural appropriation’, and why people don’t always seem to ‘get it’ is because it is an ‘intellectually demanding’ process to go through in analysing each case.”
{Yes, a lot of disingenuous ‘reasoning’ is required to make such nonsense palatable…}

“The Toronto gallery that planned to exhibit Amanda PL’s work was quick to cancel when two complaints came in, says co-owner Tony Magee, who adds he’s now fielding complaints from those angered by the cancellation.

“We didn’t make our decision (to cancel) out of political correctness. We didn’t do it as caving to pressure. We did it because we opened our eyes,” says Magee, whose shop opened in January.

“It’s really ‘offensive’ {Now, HE’S ‘offended’. What a bunch of overgrown children…} to have people accuse us of caving in and not being willing to stand up for what we believe in. Well, we are standing up for what we believe in.”

{Then you’re really a fool, rather than a coward…}

“Amanda PL has said her work was inspired by the Woodland school and has acknowledged a similarity to the work of {Canadian} Anishinaabe artist Norval Morrisseau.
{VIDEO: https://youtu.be/HGFHrQsmQZ4 }

“The problem for many is that she’s ‘white’, and seems to have made no effort to consult with the Anishinaabe community even after vociferous protest.
{There is no need for her to ‘consult’ with anyone, particularly those whose only connection is the same skin colour as Norval Morrisseau.}

Amanda PL (PHOTO: Martin Trainor – CBC)

“The flap follows an uproar at the ‘Whitney Biennial’ last month, when Brooklyn, N.Y.-based artist Dana Schutz came under fire for her abstract painting “Open Casket”.

“It depicts the mutilated face of lynching victim Emmett Till at his 1955 funeral. The work sparked outrage among several ‘African-American’ artists offended that a ‘white’ woman would tackle the subject, especially since it was a ‘white’ woman whose unfounded accusations led to Till’s murder.
{Which has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with anything. Only an overt racist would think otherwise…}

“The ‘Whitney has’ refused to remove the painting, saying the museum provides a platform to explore critical issues {!!! Congratulations…}.

“But the difference here is that Schutz created the work as a reaction to last year’s {Only} Black Lives Matter protests, notes Magee. She has also said she has no intention of selling it {So?}.

“Knowledge of cultural tenets and beliefs move back and forth across cultures through history. That’s probably a good thing {“Probably”?},”

says Greg Hill, who is of Mohawk descent and from the Six ‘Nations’ of the Grand River Territory.

“It becomes a problem when things are borrowed or taken and they’re used out of context or they’re misunderstood, they’re not understood and they’re unknowingly or purposefully used in an inappropriate way.”

“He points to strict rules within various cultural groups about who can do what, and who has the right to inherit stories and imagery {Which cultural groups?}.

“These things are passed down from generation to generation. It’s really ignorant to just come in and take something and not acknowledge when it’s being pointed out to you that there might be a problem with what you’re doing {Because there isn’t…},”

says Hill, senior Audain curator of ‘indigenous’ {‘Siberian settler’} art.

“There’s certainly room for culture to be borrowed, shared and reinvented, says the man in charge of ‘indigenous’ art at the ‘National Gallery of Canada’.

“This debate is not new.

“Fashion designer Marc Jacobs was forced to apologize last September after ending ‘New York Fashion Week’ with a runway show of models in wigs that looked like dreadlocks {Why apologize to racists? It only encourages them}.

“Just last week, the creators of a series of costumes planned for the ‘Toronto Caribbean Carnival’ apologized for incorporating headgear styled after sacred ‘indigenous’ headdresses, but refused to say they would be scrapped.

“An especially odd flap {This racist nonsense is ALL “especially odd”…} emerged at the ‘University of Ottawa’ in 2015 when a yoga instructor says her free class was cancelled because of concerns over ‘cultural appropriation’…

{CBC race-baiter and} Culture critic Jesse Wente
{More on Wente here:
https://endracebasedlaw.wordpress.com/2016/10/17/cbc-race-baiting-yet-again-2/ }
says society and media have become more inclusive, which may be why we seem to see ‘transgressions’ being called out more often.
{Which makes absolutely no sense. An ‘inclusive’ culture would not regard cultural interactions as “transgressions”…}

“He found it unique that the gallery shut down Amanda PL’s show. But he links the case to a continuum of ‘colonialism’ {‘modern society’} and Canada’s history with ‘indigenous’ {‘Siberian settler’} people, noting appropriation was

“state sanctioned in Canada for decades.”
{Most of Canada was unoccupied when Europeans first arrived, and tribes routinely stole each others’ land and ‘property’…}

“Storytelling is foundational to our survival, our continued survival,”

says Wente, who is Anishinaabe {Once again confusing a trait common to all cultures for one particularly aboriginal…}.

“The ‘theft’ of our story is the loss of our culture {Someone else telling your story is spreading your culture…}. It is our ‘assimilation’ {Only if you speak English, type on a computer, drive a car, flush a toilet, have a hot shower, etc. And you’re worried about telling a story? Ridiculous hypocrite…}. That’s why in the arts it actually matters to us as much as anything else. This is as important as the pipelines, as {fictional} ‘sovereignty’, as water. They’re all interconnected {In the race-based aboriginal agenda…}.”

–‘Toronto gallery cancels exhibit of white artist’s paintings over complaints of cultural appropriation’,
{It’s noteworthy that ‘The Canadian Press’ has accepted the race-baiters’ frame of reference, referring to a ‘white’ artist…}
Cassandra Szklarski, The Canadian Press | May 7, 2017


Here We Go Again…{June 15, 2016}:
“Throughout Canada, Canadians of all backgrounds are encouraged to explore the many cultures that now make up the ‘Canadian mosaic’, and to not just celebrate their own culture but to try out other cultural traditions foreign to one’s own. Aboriginal people have, for the most part, eagerly embraced many aspects of other cultures, from clothing to music to movies to vehicles to guns to electricity to computers to… well, you get the picture.

“However, when it comes to others using aspects of aboriginal culture, suddenly it is called ‘cultural appropriation’ and its use meant to be restricted – meaning that ‘permission’ is required. This blatant hypocrisy – with its xenophobic and racist overtones – needs to be called out…”



See also:
Who Owns Culture?’ (Museums) {April 5, 2016}:
“Scholarship cannot thrive if limits are placed on who can investigate the past, or if lines of investigation are shut down. The Western traditions for the production and disposition of knowledge…are the best way to research history and culture.”
Post also at: 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s