Women

The notion of inhabited territories, beyond the geographical boundaries established by the settlers, reminds us of the nomadisms at its base and the courage of its settlement phases. The objects presented in this section express resilience and cultural adaptation to territories. The people of the First Nations circulated through these using their ingenious luggage racks. Men and woman each participating, in their own way, in the manufacture of the necessary materials. The artefacts presented here are mainly a reminder of equality in interpersonal relationships, division of labour and even political life between Aboriginal women and men. Since many indigenous nations are matriarchal and/or matrilineal societies, women play an integral role in the group, its organization and the transmission of values.

Used either when travelling or working in the home place, the Algonquin expression "tikinagan" refers to this ingenious indigenous baby carrier, magnificently designed and decorated with floral, animal or celestial motifs. While men construct the wooden structure, also made of tanned and smoked leather or fabric, the skillful sewing of the embroidered is the task of women.

Tikinagan

The manufacture of cedar, birch and ash bark baskets takes us in a journey across the country, from west to east. Along the Pacific Ocean, amongst the Salmon peoples of the West Coast, cedar is used while the Mi'gmaqw of the Atlantic Ocean have perfected the art of making baskets using ash. In Kébeq, the Atikamekw possess a traditional savoir-faire related to their territory, Nikastinan, which makes their wikawamotekaniwon (birch bark) objects renowned.

Bark baskets

Nunavik Inuit sculptures fascinate. Using stone, walrus ivory, caribou antlers or whale bones, the artists create sanannguagaq (ᓴᓇᙳᐊᒐᖅ), which are superb sculptures recounting their cosmogony, the shamanic universe and their mythological stories.  The small sculptures assembled here reflect the daily life of women, some carrying their babies on their backs.

Inuit Sculptures

Sanannguagaq

Mi’gmaqw basket

Mi’gmaqw basket

Ash 15 x 13,5 cm Carrier Collection, ancien musée du Collège de Saint-Laurent; MMAQ 1982.69.1-2

Atikamekw Basket

Atikamekw Basket

First half of the 20th century Birch bark 28,5 x 22 x 28,5 cm Collection Jean-Marie Gauvreau; MMAQ 732-1223

Abénaki Basket

Abénaki Basket

Évelyne O'Bomsawin Around 1990 Ash and sweet grass 11 x 20,5 cm Donation by Mrs Évelyne O'Bomsawin; MMAQ 1990.1.1-2

Orâgann Basket - Atikamekw

Orâgann Basket - Atikamekw

First half of 20th century Birch bark 19 x 13 x14,5 cm Collection Jean-Marie Gauvreau; MMAQ 732-1847

Sculpture

Sculpture

Thomassie Apik Around1965 Soapstone 15 x 25 x 12 cm Donation by Véronique et Pierre Riverin; MMAQ 2009.15.87

Basket

Basket

Anonyme Ash and grass Collection Musée de Charlevoix 2002.11.1502

Infant carrier/ Tikinagan

Infant carrier/ Tikinagan

Iroquois 1905 Wood; skin; paint; metal; rope 75,5 x 32,7 x 34,5 cm Collection Jean-Marie Gauvreau - MMAQ 732-1150

Infant carrier / Tikinagan

Infant carrier / Tikinagan

Iroquois 1905 Wood, pine; sinew; paint; metal 77,4 x 29,5 x 36,5 cm Collection Jean-Marie Gauvreau - MMAQ 732-1149

Sculpture

Sculpture

Charlie Sivuarapik Around 1965 Soapstone 19 x 10,5 x 9,5 cm Donation by Véronique et Pierre Riverin; MMAQ 2009.15.153

Basket

Basket

Anonymous Bark Collection Musée de Charlevoix - 2002.11.1485

Basket

Basket

Anonympus Ash; grass; Frêne; herbe; plant dye Collection Musée de Charlevoix - 2002.11.1501

Panier

Panier

Anonymous Bark Collection Musée de Charlevoix - 2002.11.1486

Sculpture

Sculpture

Kiluppa Around 1962 Soapstone 13 x 4 x 8 cm Donation by Véronique et Pierre Riverin; MMAQ - 2009.15.130

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