Going through the Narrows

Abenaki and French-Canadian artist, educator and basket-maker Judy Dow explains the contextualisation and conceptualisation of her Founders Tree and Witness Tree.

The Founder's Tapestry

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The Founders’ tapestry reflects the beliefs of eugenicists in 1921 including the belief that together all forms of knowledge could create "a better man.” This belief continues in research today under different names and in different ways and pops up in the words and deeds of Presidents, politicians, educators and more. Still trying to create “a better man” it lingers in our world like a bad stain that will not go away.

The Witness Tree

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The Witness tapestry reflects my beliefs about Anti-Eugenics in 2021. I have witnessed much after living for over 6 decades with the historical traumas caused by the beliefs named in the Founders’ tree. A witness tree in nature is a tree that has lived a long life and witnessed many occurrences like border line changes, hurricanes, flooding and other traumatic events. They are the silent sentinels that document the many memorable episodes in life, both good and bad. The roots of the Witness tree reflects what needs to be in place to fight Eugenics for one hundred years to come.