“2167: AN INDIGENOUS FUTURES VIRTUAL REALITY PROJECT”
TIFF BELL LIGHTBOX AND IMAGINENATIVE, TORONTO June and October
What could Canada look like in 150 years? Scott Benesiinaabandan, one of six Indigenous artists asked by TIFF, imaginenative, Pinnguaq and the Initiative for Indigenous Futures to envision the year 2167 through virtual reality, explains his vision.
SCOTT BENESIINAABANDAN: Language is a time capsule that could bring us from now into the future and whatever its material culture might look like. My project is an exploration of Anishinaabe language and its capacity as a glutinous language. We didnõt have the words for Òblueberry pieó 150 years ago, so I worked with linguist Alan Corbier to create new words, like Òblack holeó or Òtime dilation.ó Youõll hear narratives based on the idea that Anishinaabe people were lowered down from the sky world onto Earth through a spirit called Spider Woman, along a spiderweb. The narrative interpretation is that the spiderweb was a wormhole to the original place. I developed a narrative of going back to that place, back through that wormhole. I worked with an Elder from Manitoba, Roger Roulette, to get these translations, so youõll hear the Anishinaabemowin narratives coming back through the wormhole. There are four scenes, all abstracted in scale, so that you feel small in some scenes, and ripped through space in others. Itõs playing with dislocating you.
Scott Benesiinaabandan Blueberry Pie Under the Martian Sky (video stills) 2016