Not everyone will like what I'm about to write. You don't have to like it. Please just hear me out and think about it before making up your mind.This is the first time in my 20th year of living in Canada that I will not be celebrating Canada Day.Loving your country isn't always about celebrating its achievements. Sometimes it's about quietly reflecting on where your country has been and where it's going.As someone who has known about undocumented deaths, disappearances and runaways in the residential "school" system for many years, I am filled with joy and hope to see so many people finally take the first steps on a healing journey that will bring Canada to heights it has never seen.Denial is no longer a viable option. Canadians must now acknowledge and reckon with the aftermath of an attempted genocide, embrace those who are healing from four centuries of domination and abuse, and make our First Nations people central to this nation's future. It will be difficult. It will be worth it.On this day, please take some time to reflect on what you can do to contribute to Canada's healing process. Maybe, as a survivor or a descendant of survivors, focusing on your own healing is the most important thing you can ever do. For others, pushing past indignation and denial for the first time will be your contribution. Remember that statues can be repainted and buildings rebuilt, but lives lost are lost forever.We all have a role in this. The process will involve anger, resentment and many other emotions that are natural in these circumstances. I suggest that instead of using these emotions against one another, we use them as fuel to propel Canada into a new era of respect, equity and prosperity for all.Every day I see so many people working so hard to improve the lives of their First Nations communities and ensure a bright future. I know that they will succeed, and I want all Canadians to share in the certainty that I feel. That is the Canada that we all deserve. That is the Canada we all want. That is the Canada we can have.Let's start.
June 24, 2021, 7 days before Canada Day, Alberta legislature, Violet King Henry plaza, Open for summer July, 1, 2021 'Thank You Alberta! Alberta’s future, graduates honoured me with this picture. Thank you! Misty HeART project, 13 days to CanadaDay
2021-06-25, 6 Days before Canada Day, featuring a pensive-looking Justin Trudeau I painted before he became Canada's Prime Minister. His painting hovers over a Totem Pole, deliberately hung sideways by the artist. I'm wearing my Speakers Banned Speech & Wear t-shirt 'Buffalo eye'
The final day, 2021-06-30 before Canada Day
Canada's day is not a happy day for all, but a sad day for some, an excuse to party for others. My day will be nothing out of the ordinary as I already had my 13 days before... It's hot and my energy is flat. I'm looking forward to spending some time with my wife & the cat. Titled Trees do talk RESET (the box) Over the past 13 days, the reactions to my new painting had varied, but one young man shaken, who was overcome with fear said he saw a Wendigo in my painting 'Trees do talk' and walked away.
Wikipedia: Wendigo (/ˈwɛndɪɡoʊ/) is a mythological creature or evil spirit which originates from the folklore of First Nations based in and around the East Coast forests of Canada, the Great Plains region of the United States, and the Great Lakes region of the United States and Canada, grouped in modern ethnology as speakers of Algonquian-family languages. The wendigo is often said to be a malevolent spirit, sometimes depicted as a creature with human-like characteristics, which possesses human beings. The wendigo is known to invoke feelings of insatiable greed/hunger, the desire to cannibalize other humans, as well as the propensity to commit murder in those that fall under its influence.
June 30, 2021, Final Show Frontside canvases, 2021, Trees do talk RESET (the box). 2019-2020 Wear red as we go marching, Rome is burning. 2020-2021 George W. Bush and Jason Kenney.
June 30, 2021, Final Show Backside canvases, 2021, The Wendigo above The Rose Garden. 2020, Communism Capitalism. 2021, The Laughing planet on the backside of 2020, 2021, George W. Bush and Jason Kenney.
July 1, 2021, Happy Canada Day! 3 years ago today I completed the early morning on Canada Day 2018 'Maple Leaves, Four Seasons" on the Alberta Legislature grounds next to Premier Notley's office, during my 100th outdoor #outsiderart show & tell. My gift to my long-time friend, #NDP Rod Loyola when he introduced me to his mother during an art show by the reflection pool. The Speakers Banned Speech & Wear t-shirt I'm wearing in this 2018 photo was later banned from the Legislature assembly spring 2019, by the Sergeant-at-Arms Chris and LASS staff after Chris asked me if I thought the Alberta Legislature was an honourable place? I spent the following year answering Chris's question by developing more of my Speakers Banned Speech & wear designer t-shirts, baseball caps, and winter toques of Alberta. The ban on my t-shirts has recently been lifted by the Alberta Legislature's Sergeant-at-Arms Chris and his associate Tom, during one of my 13 days before Canada Day 2021. I'll need to keep a close eye on Chris as he continues as the current Sergeant-at-Arms (retired Edmonton police officer) Last week the man tried to steal my little blue wagon full of paintings when I had my back turned and wasn't looking, but I nabbed him with the goods and gave him a warning... Happy Canada Day to Chris, his staff, and all the Alberta Legislature staff, MLAs, Ministers, and Premiers Rachel Notley and Jason Kenney, whom all have been very patient with me over the years, always welcoming me ever since I decided to move onto the Legislature grounds, 2013, and turn the grounds into my personal art gallery, studio, and free press office. This fall I plan to move back into Speaker Nathan Cooper's assembly to follow all the action and produce more Quickdraws from the public (not empty press) gallery on behalf of my #Outsiderart and citizen #FreePress.
#CanadaDay2019, Alberta Sheriff Luke (left) holds "A ghost by a tree on Armistice day" Sheriff Jerry holds "O’Canada" Painted next to NDP Premier Notley's office. Me wearing my #outsiderart, Speakers Banned Speech & Wear t-shirt "O’Canada". #CanadaDay2021 Enjoy freedom, thank a veteran!
Painter's log re 'The Legislature has no dome', Canada Day Facebook post 2019, quote 'I wanted to see you again, touch you, know who you were, see if I would find you identical with the ideal image of you which had remained with me and perhaps shatter my dream with the aid of reality.' - C. Frollo
Wikipedia: Monseigneur Claude Frollo (French: [klod fʁɔlo]) is a fictional character and the main antagonist of Victor Hugo's 1831 novel The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (known in French as Notre-Dame de Paris). He is the Archdeacon of Notre Dame.
'Take the time to reflect not deflect.'