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Opening the Doors to Dialogue at Woodland

Opening the Doors to Dialogue at Woodland

Opening the Doors to Dialogue is a collaborative project, which involves artists, organizations, Elders, and community members. Residential school survivors and/or their descendants, as well as members of the public (both native and non-native) will be participating. This project is led by artist, researcher, and educator, Samuel Thomas (Six Nations of the Grand River – Cayuga), in partnership with Paula Whitlow, Museum Director at the Woodland Cultural Centre.

Seven doors, salvaged from residential schools across Canada, will be beaded through a series of sessions at the Woodland Cultural Centre in Brantford. These sessions will provide a forum for open dialogue between participants, while they engage in the cultural experience of beading. Participants will share their experiences and stories of the legacy left behind by the residential school, including the former Mohawk Institute Residential School that remains on Mohawk Street in Brantford.

The project will not only open the doors to the healing process through the development of the artwork, but the works will continue to create dialogue when exhibited. The final exhibit in September 2016 at the Woodland Cultural Centre will feature the final doors, along with audio recordings of the dialogue that generated through the creation process.

The Woodland Cultural Centre invites the community to the Opening Ceremonies on Saturday, January 16, 2016 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

For more information about the Opening the Doors to Dialogue project, click here to open the project Facebook page a new browser window.

For more information about the Woodland Cultural Centre, click here to open a new browser window.

Opening the Doors to Dialogue is funded by the Canada Council for the Arts, the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation, and The Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada (The Circle) through the {Re}conciliation initiative. The initiative aims to promote artistic collaborations between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal artists by investing in the power of art and imagination to inspire dialogue, understanding, and change.

Photo credit: Samuel Thomas, beadwork. 


Brantford Arts and Culture , Woodland Cultural Centre , Six Nations of the Grand River


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