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Item Name: Sculpture
Title: Birch Bark Ltd.
Maker: KC Adams
Year: 2012
Country: Canadian
Materials: porcelain; LED lights; variable
Measurements: each sculpture is approximately 44in
ID Number: PC2015.9.3
Legal Status: PERMANENT COLLECTION


Extended Label Info: These delicate birch bark trees are sculptures created out of porcelain. LED lights within each cast a soft glow, highlighting symbols on each tree that were created in the style of birch bark biting. Known as “wigwas mamacenawejegan” in Ojibwa, birch bark biting is produced by folding a thin sheet of birch bark and biting into it to mark or pierce the surface to create a symmetrical design, and often used as sketches or templates for beadwork. In the past, bitings were often discarded; today, they are collected as artworks. Artist KC Adams references this tradition to reflect her cultural roots. However, instead of beadwork patterns, Adams recreates corporate logos that are part of her contemporary, urban life. By embedding logos for companies such as Apple Computers, the Bay, Manitoba Hydro, Safeway, the Olympics, the Winnipeg Art Gallery or the Royal Bank of Canada, Adams presents a critique of contemporary society, which is very driven by consumerism and the influence of powerful companies. It is also a metaphor of her experience as a contemporary Indigenous person, balancing between pop culture and her historical cultural roots. KC Adams (1971 - ) Born in Yorkton, which is part of Treaty Four territory, Adams is an Oji-Cree artist currently working in Winnipeg, Manitoba in Treaty One. Adams earned her BFA in Studio Arts from Concordia University. She works in various media that include sculpture, installation, drawing, painting, photography, ceramics, printmaking, and kinetic art. Her work has been shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions throughout Canada, the United States, Europe, and Australia. Her work is in many permanent national and international collections.