50. In keeping with the United Nations Declaration on
the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, we call upon the federal government, in collaboration with Aboriginal organizations, to fund the establishment of Indigenous law institutes for the development, use, and understanding of Indigenous laws and access to justice in accordance with the unique cultures of Aboriginal peoples in Canada.
I know the calls does not speak directly to ordinary citizens, but it really did speak to me. I work at a law school that has already established just such an institute (the Indigenous Law Research Unit). The ILRU has been doing exceptional work over the past years, working with and alongside Indigenous communities, focused on the issues, processes and traditions important to those communities. The work of the ILRU, including the work on the graphic novel Mikomosis and the Wetiko, (click here to link to the teaching guide) has been a central part of my own intellectual and political life over the past years, and so i had been thinking of a way to make the TRC call #50 'my own'.
|a pile of completed pendants|
So... this summer, I decided to take my usual summer vacation (making pottery necklaces to give away for my September birthday), and turn it into a project to raise funds for the work of the ILRU. Thus, during the summer, I spent my vacation in OCD mode, making necklaces.
|the view from the pottery wheel under the deck|
|pendants drying in the sun|
Depending on the batch, the clay was one of these: CKK6, Klamath Red, Midnight Black, Dove, Polar Ice. It is stoneware, or porcelain and was fired to Cone 6. This summer, I also played with a number of oxides and stains, and mixed them into the clay. I then wedged the plain and coloured clays together. I then shaped the individual pieces (rib tools, modelling tools, carving tools, etc), played around with them at the leather hard stage, then got them dried to greenware.
|pendants after a bisque firing|
|first batch coming out of a glaze-firing|