Canadian Museum of History celebrates Indigenous architecture with UNCEDED – Voices of the Land

May 2, 2019


For immediate release

Canadian Museum of History celebrates Indigenous architecture with UNCEDED – Voices of the Land

Gatineau, Quebec, May 2, 2019 — The Canadian Museum of History is proud to showcase Canada’s critically acclaimed entry in the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale. UNCEDED – Voices of the Land is an innovative, immersive audiovisual installation by an Indigenous design team, led by internationally renowned architect Douglas J. Cardinal. The unprecedented exhibition will run from May 3, 2019 to March 22, 2020.

“We are delighted to be the first venue in Canada to host UNCEDED – Voices of the Land, following its successful debut in Venice. We are especially proud to partner with Douglas Cardinal Architect Inc. to present this celebration of Indigenous architecture,” said Mark O’Neill, President and CEO of the Canadian Museum of History. “This groundbreaking exhibition highlights the important contributions that Indigenous cultures have made to the world. It also underlines our commitment to promoting a greater understanding of Canadian and Indigenous history.”

Cardinal designed the stunning curvilinear form of the Canadian Museum of History and its new signature exhibition, the Canadian History Hall — a space driven by human stories and historical treasures. He also designed the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.

UNCEDED, curated by David Fortin and Gerald McMaster, is a breathtaking multimedia installation that brings together the past, present and future of the Indigenous experience, as seen through the eyes and minds of 18 Indigenous architects and designers from across Turtle Island (North America).

“We wanted to show the international community how important the Indigenous world view is to the rest of the world, for the future of our human family,” said Douglas J. Cardinal. “But of course, that education should start at home in our own country. So, I’m extremely happy that Mark O’Neill at the Museum of History feels that it is important to showcase this international exhibit in our own country, with the opportunity of touring North America.”

In UNCEDED, architects and designers representing Anishinaabe, Blackfoot, Cree, Dene, Lakota, Métis, Mohawk, Navajo, Nisga’a and other Indigenous nations have created an awe-inspiring journey through four thematic “territories”: Sovereignty, Resilience, Colonization and Indigeneity. Their work speaks to and from diverse landscapes, overcoming unforgiving limitations, and serving as a beacon of hope and pride throughout Turtle Island.

Instead of artifacts, the is exhibition using motion graphics, eye-to-eye life-size video projections and original soundscapes to convey the concept of Indigenous architecture as a storytelling process integrating spirituality, respect for people and the land, resistance, resilience and indigenous teachings.

UNCEDED – Voices of the Land was selected by the Canada Council for the Arts to represent Canada at the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale, the most prestigious showcase of contemporary architecture in the world. UNCEDED is presented with support from the Canada Council for the Arts, and will be on display at the Canadian Museum of History until March 22, 2020.

Located on the shores of the Ottawa River in Gatineau, Quebec, the Canadian Museum of History welcomes over 1.2 million visitors each year. The Museum’s principal role is to enhance Canadians’ knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the events, experiences, people and objects that have shaped Canada’s history and identity, as well as to enhance Canadians’ awareness of world history and culture. Work of the Canadian Museum of History is made possible in part through financial support of the Government of Canada.

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