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imagineNATIVE at Ka'tarohkwi Festival of Indigenous Arts

  • Isabel Bader Theatre 390 King Street West Kingston, ON, K7L 2X4 Canada (map)

We're co-presenting Zoe Leigh Hopkins' Kayak to Klemtu, along with short films by Jay Cardinal Villeneuve, Terril Calder, Asinnajaq, Asia Youngman, Caroline Monnet and Sean Stiller as part of the Ka'tarohkwi Festival of Indigenous Arts at Isabel Bader theatre in February and March!

Film listings, details and tickets →

February 27 @ 6:30pm - AN EVENING OF INDIGENOUS SHORT FILMS (Presented by ImagineNATIVE)

1. HOLY ANGELS, Jay Cardinal Villeneuve (Cree/Métis) | 13 min, Documentary
On the outskirts of Fort Chipewyan, Alberta, stands the Holy Angels Residential School, an ominous brick building where hundreds of children were imprisoned. Elder Lena Wandering Spirit recounts her time at Holy Angels. Her story takes us on a healing journey that echoes in the dance of Phoenix, a young girl who is the same age now that Lena was during her captivity. Their lives bridge the distance of time and affirm the power that lies within us.

2. KEEWAYDAH (LET’S GO HOME), Terril Calder (Métis) | 9 min, Animation
The moth’s powerful transformational gifts can bring us from one world to the next. In this stunning work, the moth brings home 12-year-old Chanie Wenjack. It serves as a metaphor for a call for change in the often-fraught relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canada.

3. THREE THOUSAND, Asinnajaq (Inuk) | 14 min, Documentary
Artist Asinnajaq throws a creative net into the National Film Board of Canada’s audiovisual archive, weaving historic footage of the Inuit into a stunningly original animation. In 14 minutes of luminescent cinema, she recasts the past, present, and future of the Inuit in a surprising new light.

4. KÉWKU, Sean Stiller (Secwepémc) | 10 min, Documentary
As Shuswap elder Ralph Phillips walks through his territory picking sage, he reveals the sometimes difficult stories of his life that have impacted his journey, beginning with his time at residential school. As he prepares the medicine and cleanses himself, he reveals the ways he came out of abuse and trauma to stand strong in his community.

5. LELUM’ (HOME), Asia Youngman (Cree/Iroquois/Carrier/Métis | 9 min, Documentary
Lelum’ (the Hul’qumi’num word for ‘home’) portrays the strength and beauty of the land from the perspectives of Indigenous youth. Stunning aerial shots of British Columbia landscapes are complemented with messages that speak to our inherent responsibility to protect and show respect for our home.

6. CREATURA DADA, Caroline Monnet (Algonquin) | 4 min, Experimental
Six powerful Native women gather to celebrate a new beginning and the end of the world as we know it.


March 13 @ 6:30pm - KAYAK TO KLEMTU (Presented with ImagineNATIVE)
A 14-year-old girl readies for a kayak trip along the shores of the Great Bear rainforest with her family to protest oil tanker traffic.
Released: 2018 (Canada)
Director: Zoe Leigh Hopkins (Heiltsuk/Mohawk)
Music composed by: Oleksa Lozowchuk
Cinematography: Vince Arvidson
Executive producers: Sheryl Kotzer, Ethan Lazar, Alex Ordanis, Christopher Yurkovich
90 min | PG


March 26 - FILMS BY LISA JACKSON (Presented with ImagineNATIVE)
1. SNARE | Drama, 3.5 min
Spare and visually arresting, with a haunting soundtrack, SNARE captures the brutality of violence against Indigenous women. An artistic response to this real-life issue, it brings the experience of women to the forefront, as well as the possibility of healing, grace and greater understanding.

2. SUCKERFISH | Memoire, 8 min
When she was ten, Lisa Jackson fled Toronto to live with relatives in Vancouver to escape her mother's depression, alcoholism and prescription drug abuse - legacies of the residential school experience. Now, sifting through her memories and her mother's letters, she constructs a portrait of a mother whose drive to love her daughter triumphed over her demons of addiction. Animation, childhood photographs and stylized recreations add the young child's whimsical voice to this moving, at times humorous, look at the director's relationship to her mother and native identity.

3. THE VISIT | Animation, 4 min
The true story of a Cree family's strange visit one night, and a conversation beyond words. Documentary audio, animated by Jody Kramer.

4. HOW PEOPLE LIVE | Documentary, 45 min
In 1970, a former Indian Agent wrote a controversial book he said was based on the lives of the Gwa'sala-'Nakwaxda'xw First Nation and titled it, "How a People Die." Forty years later, this film shows us their traditional life and culture as well as the traumas that threatened to destroy them, to see how a people live. Candid and moving interviews, striking archival films and photos dating back over 100 years, and a visit to their stunning "Homelands" bring to life the story of a people known for their theatrical dances, their connection to the land, and the strength that has enabled them to overcome incredible hardships.


Ka'tarohkwi Festival of Indigenous Arts
Outstanding and original new work by Indigenous artists inspired by the knowledge and creative practice of hundreds of generations. Artists from across Turtle Island will gather to share the vibrant present and futures of Indigenous cultural resurgence. Curated by Dylan Robinson.