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We are Not a Phase: Indigenous Screening Series + Talks
September 30, 2020 - January 22, 2021

Overview – We are Not a Phase: Indigenous Screening Series + Talks

In partnership with Turtle Island Aboriginal Education Centre | University of Windsor, St. Clair College Indigenous Student Services, VUCAVU and Arts Council Windsor & Region proudly present: We are Not a Phase: Indigenous Screening Series + Talks. This is the fourth collaboration between ACWR and the Turtle Island Aboriginal Education Centre to engage and gather the University community and those outside to experience film and discussions reflecting on Indigeneity and to honour community initiatives that are Indigenous led. This year we are proud to welcome St. Clair College and VUCAVU as collaborators with support from the National Film Board of Canada. 

We are Not a Phase: Indigenous Screening Series + Talks are a series of four separate short programs that showcase a variety of film genres by primarily Indigenous Directors from across Turtle Island. The organizers assert that in this time what comes to mind is the connection to the land and the responsibility to the past and future generations. The films are grounded in the concerns of communities, pride, resiliency and memory. The discussion will involve community members with special guests who will be able to speak from their own perspective and worldview. The goal is to build relationships within the communities we occupy and to celebrate the artists who imagine a better future for their people.

We are Not a Phase: The Legacy of Residential School

In honour of Orange Shirt Day 

September 30, 2020 @7pm

Keynote Presentation by Jay Jones

Moderator: Kat Pasquach


Jay Jones is the proud son of Susie and Vernon Jones, both are Shingwauk Residential school survivors. He considers himself a “1st Generation Out Survivor”, but he is also a 5th generation Indian Residential School survivor. He is the current President of the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association and a proud member of Walpole Island First Nation. He is a designer by trade at General Motors and an advocate of the IRS story and Special Olympic athletes.

The Films:

Etlinisigu’niet (Bleed Down) | Dir. Jeff Barnaby | 5:08 | 2015

Roberta | Dir. Caroline Monet | 9:00 | 2014

A Common Experience | Dir. Shane Belcourt | 10:20 | 2013

Mia | Dir. Amanda Strong & Bracken Hanuse Corlett | 8:09 | 2015 

SWEAT | Dir. Kristin Snowbird | 4:44 | 2016

The Legacy of Residential School

Films Programmed by: Julie Rae Tucker

This selection of films make visible the intergenerational effects of the Residential school system. There is complexity of what has been experienced and carried forward by the families of survivors. For Indigenous people in Canada, institutions were sites of harm and assimilation into the settler colonial state.  This is quite evident in the film, Common Experience. This film depicts the traumatic apprehension by school officials and the experiences of one survivor from the perspective of her daughter  The title of this film refers to the payment that was given to all living survivors from recognized institutions as acknowledgment of their experience and the impact on their lives. 

In her film SWEAT,  filmmaker Kristin Snowbird states, “Many reserves because of residential schools, the religious realms shift back and forth between Catholic and traditional beliefs…Traditional ceremonies were never introduced to me through my family. It was out of my own curiosity that I began to learn about them”. Her story illustrates her resiliency and determination to connect to her traditional culture. 

The films Mia and Roberta diverge from the other films into fiction, however they depict a struggle to conform to society norms. The main character Roberta, a grandmother illustrates complexity in her reason for being. In the film Mia, a street artist, connects to her elder’s stories through blood memory.  The characters in each of the films seem to be sleepwalking through their lives guided by unknown forces. What is made visible are the interiority of each of the characters as they undergo great change.

For those generations impacted by its legacy, how can they trust institutions that have benefited from systems of oppression that are continuing to shape the present?  Justice Murray Sinclair states, “The legacy can be seen in the myths, misunderstandings, and lack of empathy many Canadians openly display about indigenous people, their history, and their place in society”. Barnaby’s film the Etlinisigu’niet (Bleed Down) offers a strong counter narrative of Canada. This is power in filmmaking to redress these myths through storytelling and representation reflective of the filmmakers’ specific worldview and to build Indigenous framed narratives. 

Orange Shirt Day is an opportunity to consider the legacy of the Residential School system in Canada, to participate and to learn. We encourage you to do your own research on the Residential Schools system, here are some resources to get started:


Phyllis Webstad‘s story of her orange shirt

Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association 

Shingwauk’s Vision: A History of Native Residential Schools

Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action

Art, Law, and Community: Truth and Reconciliation through Art

We are Not a Phase: Upcoming

2. Black & Indigenous Solidarity Screening:
Kinship & Relocation 

October 28, 2020 

Panel & Films: HERE

3. Rock your Mocs

November 19, 2020 

Panel & Films TBA


 January 22, 2021

Keynote & Films TBA

Big thank-you to our partners:















Organized by

Arts Council Windsor & Region ⋅ 519-252-2787 ⋅ info@acwr.net

September 30, 2020 - January 22, 2021


ON Canada