Friday, December 9, 2011

"The Path Without End" by Elizabeth Lameman, Anishinaabe/Mètis

Elizabeth Lameman, an Anihinaabe/Mètis creator of the graphic novel "The West Was Lost," made this video after she was "fed up with the inability of words to capture [her] interpreation of Native Steampunk." You should pop over to her blog to read about the process behind making this animation, which is a retelling of Anishinaabe stories about Moon People. The soundtrack to the video, "Prosperity," is by Cris Derksen, a Cree cellist.

The result combines multi-textured visuals, made with familiar objects such as beads, with a narrative about interplanetary travel that could take place in any time period, a story that has been handed down for generations, and a soundtrack that also does its own work of combining different kinds of sounds.

Please go check out Beth's commentary on making this video, and leave her comments on Vimeo if you have an account! When I first watched it, I... I had no idea what was going on, and she explained to me, that it's about "travel back and forth between worlds and the Wetiko chasing us wherever we go." And it was amusing for her, because her kid, who's three, knows exactly what's going on, but an adult who didn't grow up immersed in Anishinaabe culture, like yours truly, has a much harder time understanding what's being depicted.

It makes me tip my hat all the more, actually, that it is so recognizably steampunk, and yet so culturally specific. It makes me really happy to see more of this kind of work out there!

Elizabeth Lameman, Anishinaabe/Mètis, everybody! 

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