Unsettling the Homestead
Keywords:Settler, Homestead, Genealogy, Mi’kma’ki, Settler-colonialism
Unsettling the Homestead is a reflection on an art exhibit by the same name, showcased at Crossroads Gallery in April 2017. The exhibit investigated settler histories of the Stewiacke Valley by weaving personal stories, ancestral memories, and Indigenous histories into a multi-media installation. Unsettling the Homestead invited visitors to a recreated East Coast kitchen to step into the history of one settler family’s farm on the land known as Sipekne’katik, Mi’kma’ki. Often, settler genealogy is void of the histories of displacement and violence against Indigenous nations. This exhibit aimed to unsettle notions of the homestead by investigating and critiquing the personal positions within these narratives. By utilizing modern multi-media and traditional English art forms, Unsettling the Homestead braided stories and experiences from multiple generations to critique our ideas of what it means to clear land, homestead, and settle.
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