(Reframing the Sweat Lodge)

Hand Dyed Felt, Foam, Silk, cotton weaving and sound.

*Collaboration Yang Qiuxuan and L Jo Enya

Work displayed at University at Buffalo Art Gallery. The Antipodal show, Buffalo, NY. USA

The piece on display created by L Jo Enya, Yang Qiuxuan, and myself (Julia Rose Sutherland)  entitled “Umma, Mama, Mother” explores labor’s cultural ideologies. Shedding light on the lack of acknowledgment of the value and importance of labor (included but not limited to childbirth, also speaking to the extent of labor in terms of handcraft/ woman’s work, emotional labor, and making) society today. To evoke labor sensations in all its forms: emotional, visual, and physical, the handmade construction creates an immersive, tactile space for the viewer to experience labor through their senses.

This project was accompanied by a drum and heartbeat soundtrack to emulate Mi'kmaq sweat lodges, which has historically brought together Indigenous peoples, especially women, when dealing with trauma and when they need to connect back to each other.