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A Conversation with Nadya Kwandibens

  Broadcast in Entertainment

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Nadya Kwandibens is of Ojibwe (Anishinaabe) / French heritage from the Northwest Angle #37First Nation in Ontario, Canada. In 2000, Nadya began exploring photography and for several years, while working professionally in numerous forms of media including video production, and radio, has gathered the experiences necessary to easily connect one-on-one with people and groups. July of 2006 marked the beginning of her portraiture work; and since then, she has been travelling extensively, photographing for several groups, organizations, individual artists, actors, musicans and role models throughout Canada and the United States. In addition to her photographic endeavours, Nadya finds creative release through website design, traditional beadworking, music and writing. Her immediate goals include: continuing work on her series “Concrete Indians”; securing studio space & store-front for Red Works Studio; continuing to develop photography workshops that instill self-empowerment, pride and vision within Native youth; travelling across Canada to visit, interview and photograph Native elders; developing a photography/ poetry book; and exploring her music. She currently resides in Toronto, Ontario. Red Works Studio empowers contemporary Indigenous lifestyles and cultures through photographic essays, features, and portraits. We, as Indigenous people, are often portrayed in history books as Nations once great; in museums as Nations frozen stoic; in the media as Nations forever troubled. These images can be despairing; however, my goal seeks to steer the positive course. If our history is a shadow, let this moment serve as light. We are musicians, lawyers, doctors, mothers and sons. We are activists, scholars, dreamers, fathers and daughters. Let us claim ourselves now and see that we are, and will always be great, thriving, balanced civilizations capable of carrying ourselves into that bright new day.
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