Presented by The School of the Arts,


with the Indigenous Studies Program, the Gender Studies and Feminist Research Program, and the McMaster Museum of Art.


Wednesday, October 23, 2013 – 7:30 p.m.
Council Chambers – Gilmour Hall 111


Kent Monkman - Dance to the Berdashe

Based on a painting of the same title by George Catlin (1796-1872), Dance to the Berdashe is a reawakening of a lost honour dance to two-spirited people.

Kent Monkman is an artist of Cree ancestry who works with a variety of mediums, including painting, film/video, performance, and installation. He explores colonialist histories and gender, queer, and two-spirit sexualities. He has had solo exhibitions at numerous Canadian museums including the Glenbow Museum in Calgary, AB, the Montreal Museum of Fine Art, the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art in Toronto, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and the Art Gallery of Hamilton. He has participated in various international group exhibitions including: The American West, at Compton Verney, in Warwickshire, England, Remember Humanity at Witte de With, Rotterdam, the 2010 Sydney Biennale, My Winnipeg at Maison Rouge, Paris, and Oh Canada! at MASS MOCA.

Monkman has created site specific performances at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, The Royal Ontario Museum, The Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian and at Compton Verney, he has also made super 8 film versions of these performances that he calls “Colonial Art Space Interventions.” His award-winning short film and video works have been screened at various national and international festivals, including the 2007 and 2008 Berlinale, and the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival.

Monkman is working towards solo exhibitions at the Musee d’art contemporain de Rochechouart in Rochechouart, France, the McCord Museum in Montreal Qc and the Denver Art Museum in Denver, Co. His work will also be included in group shows at The National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa, On, The Leslie Lohman Museum in NYC, Ny and la Galerie UQAM in Montreal, Qc.

His work is represented in numerous public and private collections including the National Gallery of Canada, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Museum London, The Glenbow Museum, The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, The Mackenzie Art Gallery, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian and The Vancouver Art Gallery. He is represented by Pierre-Francois Ouellette Art Contemporain in Montreal and Toronto, Galerie Florent Tosin in Berlin, and Trepanier Baer in Calgary.

This talk is supported by:


  • The Arts & Science Program
  • The Department of Communication Studies and Multimedia
  • The Department of English and Cultural Studies
  • The Department of Sociology
  • The Institute on Globalization and the Human Condition
  • The McMaster Chair in Canadian Literature & Culture
  • The McMaster Indigenous Graduate Student Group
  • The Office of Human Rights and Equity Services
  • The President’s Advisory Committee on Building an Inclusive Community
  • The School of Social Work
  • The Studio for Literary Cultures in Canada