Thanks to an acquisitions grant from the Ontario Arts Foundation, through the Elizabeth L. Gordon Art Program, the Thunder Bay Art Gallery is honoured to welcome into our Permanent Collection, Regalia Mukwa, by Thunder Bay artist Michel Dumont. The Gallery appreciates the additional support of Sally Colquhoun and Danial Newton toward this acquisition.
“Regalia Mukwa was made over the first two years of the pandemic. It became orange after the bodies of children were discovered in the former site of the Kamloops residential school grounds and represents the regalia I would make for myself if not for a back injury. This piece holds intersections of my Métis queer disability arts practice, and I am grateful that every lovingly carved piece of this work is staying in Thunder Bay. Miigwetch.”Michel Dumont
Michel is a queer Métis two spirited disabled artist of wearable art, mosaics, and installation art. Regalia Mukwa is (Michel’s) his largest and most detailed work to date. On view this past summer as part of Woodland POP! the work honours Mukwa, or bear. Dressed to kill, Mukwa is attired in traditional regalia, including a gashkibidaagan, or bandolier bag, and beaded moccasins. Around his mighty paws are jingles of a traditional jingle dress. He proudly sports a rainbow mohawk or headdress. Across his back flows a river of pride.
The works in the gallery’s Permanent Collection tell many stories. Traditional and innovative pieces by both established and emerging artists have come to the gallery over time. Paintings, drawings, and photography, sculpture, beadwork and fine craft, and art installations by Indigenous artists from across Turtle Island and artists from Thunder Bay and Northwestern Ontario.
Learn more about the 2022 grants from the Elizabeth L. Gordon Art Program @