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Posts tagged “First Nations


Bear Paw



Elliot Lake Treeline 2

Tree Line - roof Top 2 Mt

Prior to the settlement






coming before







– an Ojibwa village existed –




the present

( TIME )



( Sacred Place of Healing )




the Lake’s shoreline.

You Look at the Treeline.

What do you see ?


[citation needed] = ( Legal Justification ) to the power of 2




Elliot Lake Water & MW Towers Antique


The City was Established !

{ Legal Fanfare }

as a planned community .

They love it when a plan comes together.


Here comes the…….the….. the mining industry


[ A posteriori knowledge ]

The Discovery of Uranium !

In the area

– See Ojibwe



after the SMALL Lake.

Who named the lake after Elliot ?

Who was Elliot ?

A Pirori,


Anishinaabe .

Community’s Northern Edge


The Southern shore of the Lake.

The Lake came first,

A Priori.

Look at the treeline again.

A Priori.

Who dictates the curve of the streets ?

Who commands

the incline

of the Rock ?




Tree Line -  Elliot Lake 2 MtBrd

Toward the Horizon – Manitoulin

Toward the Horizon KdCH1N


Went up to the Fire Tower Lookout (Elliot Lake, Ontario) and took a few photos. With the elevation you can see a considerable distance. Floating in the mist, just above the horizon line is Manitoulin Island. Rightly so is it named. “Manitoulin”, an Anishinaabemowin word (the Ojibwe language ), means the island of Manitou. Here dwells the Great Spirit.


Toward the Horizon 3 KdCHN


Great indeed is The Island. It is the world’s largest island that is situated in fresh water lake. Manitoulin Island itself has 108 freshwater lakes, some of which have their own islands; in turn several of these “islands within islands” have their own ponds. Lake Manitou (about 104 km 2 – 40.5 sq. mi.) is the largest lake in a freshwater island in the world, and Treasure Island in Lake Mindemoya is the largest island in a lake on an island in a lake in the world. [ Source link ]


Toward the Horizon 4 KdCHN


It hangs on the horizon calling in the mist. A realm of sky, water, tree & stone, where spirits dwell. It beckons us to cross vast distance. Fly over wide wilderness. To seek a greater beauty & find peace. Our vision always moves towards the horizon. We are all drawn to our own Manitoulin.


Toward the Horizon 2 KdChN



Related post: The Towers of Elliot Lake



There Be Wolves Here

The wolf has a powerful place in the North American And European psyche, not all of it good. It is the mirror image to the domesticated dog. The dog is man’s best friend, while the wolf is the feral enemy of man. Hunted, trapped and feared.

Wolf on Wood

It has entered our folklore and language. From Red Riding Hood to the Boy who cried Wolf, European & Western children have been taught moral lessons & lessons in survival. Beware the wolf in sheep’s clothing. Watch for wolves on the prowl, be it the country-side or the city night-life.

Variations on Wolves

When desperate times come, the wolves are at the door. When the moon is full, the wolf crawls out from under a man’s skin to howl and go wild.

Wolves at The Door

winter wolves

Comparing this world view to the First Nations People, we see a very different wolf. In the First Nations Ojibwa tradition, Nanabush, son of mortal woman and the West Wind, learned how to hunt from Ma’ingan (Brother Wolf). He learned the wolves’ methods and the great taboo against wanton killing of game.


When the taboo is broken, it is the wolf who paid the price, Nanabush returns the favour and steals the wolf pelt from the spirit world, bringing back the wolf. The wolf, in turn, teaches Nanabush about the pathways of the spirit world. The wolf then returns to the land of the dead, where he is our brother, teacher, and guide on those paths.

wolf spirit

The images in this post were composed using photos of my wife’s art work. Included is a drum that my wife made & painted, a painted wooden plaque, and the painted doors to our backyard. I also made use of The illustration by Francis Barlow of the fable “The Boy who Cried Wolf”, called by him DE PASTORIS PUERO ET AGRICOLIS, 1687.

Futurology : Art Installation

For last year of teaching before retirement, my wife  took on some special projects. With her senior art class, Elizabeth set up an art installation for her students to do as their culminating activity.  They chose the theme Futurology. It was to reflect their sense of where they were and where they were going in terms of education and society. The installation was going to be a 3D mural that would become a permanent part of Elliot Lake Secondary School.

ELSS 3D Mural11

Students would take on a segment of the mural and design and create the component.  The topics reflected various elements of educational life in the school,  The sciences, literature, athletics and First Nation culture were among the topics represented.  The  3D mural was mounted in the stairwell hallway and could be viewed from below and above.  Some elements are life-size. The students created masks  and body frames for the figures.  Actual tech pieces and sport team clothing was also used .  This is another piece of ELSS that has become part of experience & history of the school.

ELSS 3D Mural 1

ELSS 3D Mural 2

ELSS 3D Mural3

ELSS 3D Mural5

ELSS 3D Mural6

ELSS 3D Mural10

ELSS 3D Mural7

As you can see, the students built a thematic structure that reflected  both traditional and emerging  forms of learning.  The media arts are represented by the computer & audio user,  Next is a 3D figure coming out of a Wacom  tablet . The hands are holding a digital camera. Next is a quotation from Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” coming to life as a hand reaches out to draw-create the school in as a 3D diagram.  You will notice that it includes our wind turbine and our courtyard.  The courtyard can be accessed from the lower part of the stairwell.

ELSS 3D Mural8

We are very proud of our First Nation students & community.  They have faced and continue to face numerous challenges. Their success will only make us all a stronger and better people.

ELSS 3D Mural4

ELSS 3D Mural9

This is what can be accomplished when a dedicated teacher shares her passion for creative expression with her students and then lets them run with it. As you can see the future is in good hands if we only let them create it.

Note: Larger versions can be seen by clicking the images.