Belle Sauvage, Buffalo Boy and Miss Chief Eagle
Testickle set up Camp at Artspace, June
18th as part of the second annual Ode'min Giizis Festival.
Written by Wanda Nanibush.
Belle Sauvage and Buffalo Boy invite you to
watch their WILD west performance where you can engage in
playing dress up and join the show. Get your photos taken
with real live 'Indians.' A queer rodeo you have never seen
before where buckskin meets fishnets and buffalo g-strings
and where rodeo's biggest name is a Cree/Saulteux woman. The
cowboy here reveres the Buffalo and is a gender bending, sexually
progressive two-spirit. The cowgirl here is the pistol wielding
"Indian' women with the meanest roping skills. The time
is now as a campy reincarnated turn of the century wild west
show, world fair, early peep show where Indigenous Peoples
performed western imaginaries of colonial conquest, manifest
destiny and supposed savagery.
Artists Lori Blondeau and Adrian
Stimson trot out their alter egos Belle Sauvage and Buffalo
Boy mining and miming a long history of performing and playing
Indian by Indigenous Peoples and Settlers alike. Remember
to read the fine print. You must sign?? over all your rights
to the photos taken and sign with an X. A re-enactment of
treaty signing days when greedy unscrupulous treaty commissioners
would make Indigenous Peoples of the Plains sign their names
to treaties that they later refused to honour and which they
interpreted as a signing over of all Indigenous rights to
life, land and culture.
alter ego Miss Chief Eagle Testickle's adventures and histories
are captured in a trilogy of films expanding the critique
of colonialism to all things canonical like Edward S. Curtis,
Western films and George Catlin. In Group of Seven Inches,
Monkman inverts the colonial gaze by presenting Miss Chief
as the one with the brush, painting her understanding of the
white man as she explores two hot hapless white men. Shooting
Geronimo finds Miss Chief changing history one high heeled
kick at a time as she records the history of two young 'braves'
taking power back from the little white man behind the camera
who desires more than their picture. Robin's Hood brings that
wandering artist, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle into Sherwood
Forest for her ultimate tryst.
The strategies of mimicry, parody and masquerade allow for
a humourous but unsettling window into the relationship of
sex and conquest, desire and colonial representation. In wilding
the West, all three artists transform the 3 C's of Capitalism,
Christianity and Colonialism into Camp, Chance and Celebration.
Join them at Artspace on June 18th for modern myth-making
Film still from Shooting Geronimo