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Regina artist wins Governor General's Award for Visual and Media arts

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Regina Métis artist David Garneau is one of eight winners of the 2023 Governor General’s Awards in Visual and Media arts. Some of his work is part of a new exhibit now open to the public at the National Gallery of Canada.

“I’m still absorbing it. It’s still soaking in,” said Garneau.

He was presented with ‘Outstanding Contribution Award’ on Thursday in Ottawa.

“I had my first show at the Bear Claw Gallery in 1980, so some time I’ve been at this game and it’s a big honour to be in the exhibition.”

This is the 15th year for the awards and it celebrates the work of artists all across the country who are a part of the visual and media arts community.

Garneau is Métis and his work is heavily influenced by his culture.

“Métis culture was repressed quite a bit and so there weren’t a lot of Métis artists making a lot of Métis work,” explained Garneau. “I make work that I would call Indigenous that is interest in these larger issues, but also very specifically Métis.”

He said he has always had a passion for raising awareness around Métis issues. That passion was strongly showcased in a performance piece when Garneau pushed to have the statue of John A. Mcdonald be removed from Victoria Park in 2014.

“Not just because of my efforts of course, many many people. The two statues in the West were taken down and I think that’s a good thing and we’ll find a good home for him. ”

Garneau’s work will be on display at the museum until March 3. 2024.

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