Today’s episode features an interview with Jeff Thomas, an urban Iroquois photographer, artist, researcher, public speaker, and curator based in Ottawa, Ontario in Canada. Jeff will talk about racism, indigeneity, colonialism and how his photography re-contextualizes historical images of First Nations people. We also talk about how art weaves in the past, present, and future.
Jeff Thomas (b. 1956, Buffalo, New York) is an urban-based Iroquois, self-taught photo-based artist, writer, pubic speaker, and curator, living in Ottawa, Ontario, and has works in major collections in Canada, the United States, and Europe. Jeff’s most recent solo shows were A Necessary Fiction: My Conversation with Edward S. Curtis & George Hunter, Art Gallery of Mississauga, The Dancing Grounds, Wanuskewin Heritage Park (Saskatoon), A Necessary Fiction: My Conversation with Nicholas de Grandmaison, University of Lethbridge Art Gallery (Lethbridge), and Resistance Is NOT Futile, Stephen Bulger Gallery (Toronto). Thomas has also been in many group shows, including The Family Camera, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Ontario: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989, Art Gallery of Ontario, Land/Slide: Possible Futures, Markham, Ontario, SAKAHÀN, National Gallery of Canada, UNMASKING: Arthur Renwick, Adrian Stimson, Jeff Thomas, Canadian Cultural Centre, Paris, France. In 1998, he was awarded the Canada Council’s prestigious Duke and Duchess of York Award in Photography, inducted to the Royal Canadian Academy of Art, in 2008 he received The Karsh Award in photography, and in 2017 received a REVAL Indigenous Art Award. Thomas has also been awarded grants from the Canada Council and the Ontario Arts Council.
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Cheryl Green, Audio Producer and Transcriber
Alice Wong, Writer, Producer, Interviewer
Lateef McLeod, Introduction
Mike Mort, Artwork
Theme Music (used with permission of artist)
Album: NO BIG DEAL
Artist: Wheelchair Sports Camp