Saturday, January 25, 2020

A Changing Nation

The end of World War Two, in Europe and the Pacific, brought the same sense of celebration among Canadians as it did in Allied nations across the world. Canadians had served throughout with distinction, and as had been the case with the First World War, the Second World War had a lasting effect on our sense of ourselves as a country.

The years following the war saw an addition to the country. Newfoundland and Labrador had been a dominion under the British Commonwealth, separate from Canada, until 1949 when it joined the Confederation following a referendum. The province's first premier, Joey Smallwood, is thus considered the final Father of Confederation.

The debate over a distinctive national flag would occupy attention across the country. For years the Red Ensign was used, but the debate finally led to the flag we have today.

1967 was our centennial year as a country.

This area starts bringing things to the current day by going through thematic displays. The First Nations is a big part of that.

This is a fire bag, made by a Metis artist, with materials including wool, leather, sinew, silk, cotton, and glass beads.

This headdress belongs to Phil Fontaine, formerly the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations.

Art can be found here.

This headdress is of the Huron-Wendat people, made around 1911 by Caroline Gros-Louis.

While this is more recent. REDress was a concept by Metis artist Jaime Black to bring attention to violence against First Nations women. This piece by Fiona Legg is titled 1181 Reasons, commemorating the 1,181 missing or murdered Indigenous women identified by the RCMP by 2012. The work dates to 2015.


  1. I love the "fire bag" and the art.

  2. I am sure that many have forgotten the rancour of the flag debate, but it was quite awful at times.

  3. I had a friend who was firmly against the new flag. His parents were of British origin, and I think a flag without Union Jack somewhere was problematic for them.

  4. @Linda: as do I

    @Ella: it is.

    @David: I can imagine.

    @Anvilcloud: that isn't surprising.

    @Gattina: I do too.

  5. I knew nothing of the flag furor, but I sure do like the one they finally picked. :-)

  6. The art you show is beautiful William.

  7. Good to see the First Nations art included. That red dress is incredible, and sad.

  8. The crafted pieces are fantastic!

  9. Some very hard work had to be done after WW II. It changed us .

  10. So much to see and absorb here William. I think Canada made the best choice Re the flag ✨

  11. ...those were happy times here two. Your flag is simple and simply beautiful.

  12. I never knew about the story behind the design of the Canadian Flag. But I have always liked your Maple Leaf flag, it's a beautiful and easily recognizable design.

  13. That artwork is beautiful and wow, those headdresses.

  14. I really like seeing the headdress and garments. Interesting about the flag!

  15. Love the firebag and the headdress.

  16. @DJan: it's the only flag I've known for my country, after all.

    @Marleen: I think so too.

    @Barbara: I agree.

    @RedPat: very much so.

    @Red: it did indeed.

    @Grace: I think so too.

    @Tom: that it is.

    @Jan: it is, yes.

    @Karl: thank you.

    @Sharon: indeed.

    @Jeanie: thanks!

    @Fun60: so do I.

  17. Great art work and choice for the flag!

  18. Nice artwork. I'm glad the issue of missing First Nations women is being highlighted. I'm not sure if it's similar with our Native Americans in particular but certainly it's not alien to our people of color in general.

  19. The dress is wonderful. I wish it were on a form, to retain its shape and show more of the 1181 reasons.

  20. Interesting exhibits especially the artworks and head dresses.

  21. That red dress is powerful piece.
    I have read about The First Nation people in your country and we have the same problem here, Where I live we have several nations that our congress doesn't care about the numbers of women and children missing or killed.

  22. Well ~ World II certainly changed the world ~ let's hope we will learn from our 'wars' ~ Lovely First Nation photos .

    Happy Moments to You,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  23. The headdress is a work of art.

  24. The headdress is amazing …

    All the best Jan

  25. @Bill: thank you!

    @Alexandria: indeed.

    @Marie: definitely.

    @Kay: it is a huge problem.

    @Joanne: I imagine it's the designer's request.

    @Nancy: thank you.

    @Parsnip: it continues to be a problem.

    @Carol: thank you.

    @Gemel: definitely.

    @Jan: that it is.