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New Transit shelter bridges past & future through Métis art

For immediate release: Wed, 2018-09-26 12:58
TU18-546

As part of the City’s commitment to reconciliation, a transit shelter was designed in collaboration with students from Aden Bowman Collegiate and Saskatoon Metis Elder, Senator Nora Cummings to be installed in front of the school.

“This new transit shelter is a wonderful addition to our community and our transit system,” says Mayor Clark. “The inspiring artwork can be enjoyed by everyone, including the neighbouring community and transit riders alike.”  

Saskatoon Transit’s Bus Shelter Art Project complies with Call to Action #79, calling upon the government, Aboriginal organizations and the arts community, to develop a reconciliation framework for Canadian heritage and commemoration, including integrating Indigenous history, heritage values and memory practices into Canada’s history.

“This beautiful bus shelter is just one example of what we hope will be many collaborations with the youth in our community,” says Jim McDonald, Director of Saskatoon Transit. “This project serves not only as a bus shelter in a location where there otherwise wouldn’t have been one, but also celebrates the rich cultural history of the area.”  

The artwork was inspired by Métis history, heritage, values and the memories of Senator Elder Nora Cummings and was laser cut by Metal Shapes Manufacturing.

“It's exciting for us as Métis to have the historic value and contributions of the Road Allowance Métis people acknowledged by the youth of Aden Bowman,” Cummings says. “This area was once a community garden of the Métis and this shelter is a beautiful representation of what once stood on this place.”

“It was an honour for the art students of Aden Bowman and for me to meet with Métis Elder Nora Cummings and learn about the Métis history in this area,” says Tamara Rusnak, Art teacher at Aden Bowman.

Saskatoon Transit completed the first engagement session with Elder Cummings and 19 students at Aden Bowman on May 8, 2018. Elder Cummings spoke specifically to the landscape and the people of the area where Aden Bowman is situated and shared pictures of what the area looked like when she was a young girl.

The students were asked to create original, timeless and commemorative art that celebrates the Métis heritage, history, values and memories of Elder Cummings. They created the art for the bus shelter using inspiration from the engagement session, keeping in mind the functionality and design of the shelter.