Native Model Studio to Showcase at Awareness Event
written by: Armand LaPlante
for Indigenous Times Newspaper - March 2011
On Saturday March 26th, Oskayak High School will be host to a night of entertaining and empowering speaking and performances in Native culture and fashion. Organized by the University of Saskatchewan’s Native Studies Class (271), the event entitled "Dreams for a Better Future: Culture & Fashion for a Cause" focuses on creating awareness for Aboriginal women’s issues.
"This is a class project and our goal was to create awareness for issues that Aboriginal women face including violence, sexism and overall hardships." states Dabney Warren, a student and co-coordinator of the event. Special guest speakers leading the way will be Dr. Priscilla Settee, Verna St. Denis and Dr. Alex Wilson who will be speaking on these issues.
The night will also include Aboriginal models from the Saskatoon area who have been recruited by the Native Model Studio (Winnipeg, MB) wearing apparel from Sask Native fashion designers Disa Tootoosis, Tracey George Heese, Chantel Dustyhorn, Misty Naytowhow as well as Timothy Lewis, the owner of Tansi Clothing. Disa’s work has been featured in Indigenous Times News in previous editions.
Lisa Muswagon, head of the Native Model Studio, finds that giving Aboriginal women the chance to model and be a part of the industry gives them a self esteem boost and exposes them to new horizons. "This is a great chance to bring everyone together and build each other up. We want to help girls and women with their self esteem; to build their self confidence so they can go on to create positive relationships and be independent." States Lisa, "This is also a great opportunity to work together, not only with the models but with the designers and performers as well."
There will be First Nations dancing performed by Buffalo Boy Productions, a Saskatoon-based First Nations dance troop who perform a whole set that includes Pow wow dancing and specialty dances like the Horse, Eagle and Buffalo dances. Music entertainment will be performed by widely known artist and Saskatoon’s own Eekwol as well as Violet Naytowhow of Prince Albert. Tyson Anderson Photography will appear as the official photographer at the fashion show; Tyson is a young, talented Aboriginal photographer from Manitoba.
"Everybody, First Nations and non-First Nations alike are welcome to get an educational understanding of Aboriginal women’s issues as well as to come take a look at what First Nations designers and performers have to offer." states Dabney.
The doors for the event open at 6pm at Oskayak High School on Broadway Avenue in Saskatoon. More info as well as contacts can be reached at the facebook event page: "Dreams for a Better Future: Culture & Fashion for a Cause". •