Photos and quotes provided by XFM News Reporter Andrew Graham
A travelling art installation at Museum London is stirring up conversation about the reality of Canada’s history just in time for the 150th Anniversary.
The Witness Blanket features over 180 artifacts from residential schools and will be on display until July 9th.
The London Community Foundation provided the funding that brought the Blanket to the Forest City. Martha Powell, President and CEO of the London Community Foundation, says that since the exhibition’s installations emotions have ran high.
“There’s tears, there’s humbleness, there’s recognition and a desire to learn more.”
Powell says one person of Jewish background said the experiences chronicled in the piece are comparable to the Holocaust.
The Witness Blanket was put together by Carey Newman after the world-renowned artist discovered that his father had been put through the horrors of assimilation during the 20th century.
Powell says Newman made this piece “as a gift to his father and to other survivors to help them heal.”
She adds that Newman’s motivation was about more than just creating something for people to look at:
“First Nations were here long before we were and I think this is an opportunity to recognize that our story is not just 150 years in Canada-it’s much more and much deeper than that.”
From now until July 6th, Museum London will be hosting events every Thursday that discuss the Witness Blanket in depth.