Community Quilt – Canada 150 Project

hɛkʷ čɛ θ tuwa? // where do you come from? // d’où venez-vous?

Where were you born? Where did you live before you came here? Where did your ancestors come from? How do you understand the mystery of your existence? What experiences have shaped you into the person you are today?

As Canada marked the passing of 150 years since becoming a nation, many in our island community wanted to create space for exploration and reflection on how the histories of our island’s Indigenous peoples, settlers, and visitors have layered against each other, intersecting and diverging in complicated ways.

P1 Myth & Creation

P2 Beautiful Friendship

P3 Oceans & Mountains

P4 Plants & Animals

P5 Kaleidoscope

The idea to create a community quilt jumped out of a memory from ƛohos Elder, Rose Hanson. She recalled winters that her mother and aunts would spend weaving together fabric into beautiful quilts. Quilts are symbols of contemplation and unity in many cultures, and as such, an apt metaphor for the work of reconciliation.

We invited participants to reflect on their own answers to this seemingly simple question: “hɛkʷ čɛ θ tuwa? // where do you come from?” and then to decorate a fabric square in response. These squares were sewn together into five panels, broadly grouped by themes of Myths & Creation, Friendship & Relationships, Plants & Animals, Oceans & Mountains, and Kaleidoscope.

It is our hope that each person who participated in the community quilt project was able to learn new things about themselves, their history, and that from this place, we can infuse the next 150 years with deeper connections, healing, and transformation.

Quilt Panel Descriptions: 

Explorations of profound metaphorical imagery, spanning ideas like the Big Bang, volcanic explosions, mother’s wombs, and connections with ancestors.

Images that honour the loving bonds of relationships with friends and family. Some squares show off favourite activities that give meaning to life, and others are full of the humour and fun that can make even dull or difficult moments worthwhile.

We are nestled between mighty mountains and powerful seas, at the mercy of the ever-changing moods of the wind and rain. When the sun bursts through the clouds to warm the ancient stones that guard the island’s shorelines, sensations of belonging and joy are contagious.

Powerful medicine can be found in plants, animals and the cycles of nature. Many of us are drawn to this island to be close to the wildness of forests and creatures. It is a great privilege to be able to experience the self-care and healing that comes from opening oneself up to the lifeways of other living beings.

We are gathered together from all corners of the world, with so much to learn from each other. Listen: our ancestors are whispering to us through the wind and the trees. This quilt honours the diversity of experience and perspective that we can share with each other across differences. Some squares on this quilt are left open to honour the stories of those who were unable to participate, as well as the teachings of our ancestors that we all carry deep within us, waiting to be discovered.

P1 Slide Show

P2 Slide Show

P3 Slide Show

P4 Slide Show

P5 Slide Show

Web Design by Ester Strijbos