Be A Scribe: Treaty Canoe and Voyageur



As part of the networked constellation of The Accelerators, Public Studio invites artists Alex McKay & Tory James to introduce Voyageur, a new collaborative 19-foot seaworthy iteration of McKay’s 1999 work, Treaty Canoe (12’ x 2’ x2’, papier-mâché, wood, ribbons).

Both canoes are made of treaties, hand-penned on hand-made linen paper. Using dip-pen and ink, treaties were performatively transcribed by many hands. Volunteer scribes, most having never read a treaty undertook, in a de-colonial gesture, a close reading and then reluctantly and poignantly signed the contracts in the stead of their original faithful negotiators.

Voyageur will be paddled in relay across Canada, like an Olympic Torch, arriving in Ottawa July 1st, 2017, to deliver its cargo of treaties (yours!) to the steps of Parliament.   We invite you to be a scribe, engaging in the de-colonizing transcription process, to take a shared ownership of treaties. Affirm that we are all treaty people still bound together by these founding documents to share the land and the wealth.

A co-ordinate with Public Studio's The Accelerators, hosted by O'Born Contemporary