Authors & Headliners
Lana Whiskeyjack is a multidisciplinary treaty iskwew artist from Saddle Lake Cree Nation, Treaty Six territory, Alberta. She is guided by her grandmother’s advice: “Go to school, travel, and see as much as you can. Then return home to share what you learned, but do not forget where you came from.” After graduating high school, the young mom moved to Red Deer to attain her Art & Design diploma, then moved to Ottawa with her growing family, attaining BA (Honours) and MA (Canadian Studies) degrees. Her story continues with returning to work near her home community and attaining her doctorate degree at University nuhelot’įne thaiyots’į nistameyimâkanak Blue Quills (UnBQ) in iyiniw pimâtisiwin kiskeyihtamowin, the first Indigenous-owned and -operated educational institution in Canada. Prior to 1970, UnBQ operated as Blue Quills Indian Residential School, where two generations of her maternal family attended. Lana’s research, writing, and art explores the paradoxes of what it means to be nehiyaw (Cree) and iskwew (woman) in Western culture and society, and how she and other Indigenous peoples are reclaiming, re-gathering, and remembering their ancestral medicine (sacredness and power). Her art is passionate and expressive, born from the deep roots of her culture, history, and intergenerational relations. Through the examination of sometimes difficult subjects, her art reflects the intrinsic beauty of her interconnections with the earth, Cree language, and all living beings. She invites you to join her on the next chapter of her adventure.