Nadya Kwandibens + Red Works Photography

Photo by Nadya Kwandibens

Photo by Nadya Kwandibens

Dorthea Lange, Anne Leibovitz, Anders Petersen — I’m no professional, but for whatever reason I’m drawn to portraiture. A work colleague just turned me onto a talented Ojibwe photographer, Nadya Kwandibens. Her photo company Red Works Photography features a portfolio of colour and black and white (mostly) portraits. Her series, Concrete Indians, is as lonely and empowering as it is inspiring.

Kwandibens’ vision statement:

We, as Indigenous people, are often portrayed in history books as Nations once great; in museums as Nations frozen stoic; in the media as Nations forever troubled. These images can be despairing; however, my goal seeks to steer the positive course. If our history is a shadow, let this moment serve as light. We are musicians, lawyers, doctors, mothers and sons. We are activists, scholars, dreamers, fathers and daughters. Let us claim ourselves now and see that we are, and will always be great, thriving, balanced civilizations capable of carrying ourselves into that bright new day.

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