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Nebizun: Water is Life

See dates below . . .
Image of painting Water is Life by Francine Poitras Jones.
Water is Life painting by Francine Poitras Jones

Exhibition curated by Vera Longtoe Sheehan

Curatorial Statement

Nebizun is the Abenaki word for medicine and the root word Nebi is the Abenaki word for water. The rivers and tributaries of N’Dakinna (our homeland) were our highways for traveling and the water itself is important to the species of fish and other wildlife that is necessary to our way of life. As stewards of the environment Native American people know the importance of having clean water. The Abenaki people know and understand the importance of water in everyday activities related to foodways and healing powers of water.

Featured artists include Melody Walker Brook, Amy Hook-Therrien, Rick Hunt, Francine Poitras Jones, Norm M’Sadoques, Bill Gould, Lina Longtoe, Roger Longtoe Sheehan, and Aaron York.

Special thanks to Fred Wiseman for the usage of his family’s fishing equipment.

Exhibit Schedule

May – October 15, 2022 – Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, 4472 Basin Harbor Rd, Vergennes, VT 05491

June 18 – October 10, 2022 – Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, 10 Vernon St, Brattleboro, VT 05301

Bixby Library, Vergennes, VT (TBD)

Mt Kearsarge Indian Museum, Warner, NH (TBD)

Askwa n’daoldibna iodali: We Are Still Here

April 2 – December 31, 2022

Bennington Museum, 75 Main Street, Bennington, VT 05201 Phone: 802-447-1571

Image of gourd artwork by Jeanne Morningstar Kent
Gourd artwork by Jeanne Morningstar Kent

Abenakis have lived in N’Dakinna (our homeland) since Gluskape fired his arrow into the ash tree and Alnobak (human beings) sprung from the ash tree. Over millennia, we developed scientific and technological innovations, art, and spiritual systems that helped us survive and thrive from the ice age to the present day.

Despite our complex history of colonization, significant loss of cultural knowledge keepers due to colonial wars, disease, stolen lands, and forced sterilization, we are strong and resilient people.

We retain our cultural traditions, and our artists continue to make art inspired by our history and traditions. We are your friends, neighbors, colleagues, and classmates.

We have been in this region more than 12,000 years. We are still here.

Abenaki Life on Lake Sunapee

May 28 – October 10, 2022

2nd Floor Gallery Exhibit: The John Hay Estate at The Fells in Newbury creates a special art exhibition this season called “Abenaki Life on Lake Sunapee.”  With the help of Native American consultant Sherry Gould of the Abenaki Trails Project and Vera Sheehan, of the Elnu Abenaki Tribe and Director of the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association, the exhibition uses paintings, photography, text, and other traditional art that illustrate the Abenaki experience. 

Location: John Hay Estate at The Fells, 456 RT 103A, Newbury, NH 03255

Image of logo for Clean Water Act 50th Anniversary

June 22 – October 11, 2022

The Lake Champlain Maritime Museum is featuring a “The Clean Water Act at 50” exhibit, which explores this groundbreaking legislation, its impact on Lake Champlain, and how individuals can keep Lake Champlain healthy today. In addition, the museum will refresh several favorite exhibits with new research, objects, and stories including: “Nebizun: Water is Life,” an exhibit curated by Vera Longtoe Sheehan and the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association which explores the Abenaki relationship to water as a fundamental element.

Admission to the museum is free. Check hours of operation before visiting.

Venue: Lake Champlain Maritime Museum 4472 Basin Harbor Rd.
Vergennes, VT 05491 + Google Map Phone: (802) 475-2022

Click here for more information.

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