Located in CT 217 (Language Institute (La Cité) 2nd floor)
Au Cœur de la Prairie, 2005
Acrylic on canvas
60″ x 48″
University of Regina President’s Art Collection; pc.2006.5
Métis artist David Garneau was born in Edmonton in 1962. He has lived and worked in many cities across Canada from Calgary to Halifax to Regina. Growing up with a mother who was also an artist, Garneau has always made art. His first exhibition was at the Bearclaw Gallery in Edmonton in 1980. Garneau’s art is inspired by indigenous artists Alex Janvier, Joanne Cardinal-Schubert, and Bob Boyer as well as by Métis traditional beading. He is currently one of only a handful of Métis artists making work that is both Contemporary and directly influenced by Métis material culture.
In 1994 Garneau accepted a position as Associate Professor in the Visual Arts Department of the University of Regina. Aside from his art and teaching, Garneau is also a curator and writer. He has won awards for curation in Sydney, Australia, as well as for mentorship and Métis art in Saskatchewan.
Au Cœur de la Prairie (2005) was commissioned by the University of Regina’s Institute français. The painting was created for the “Resistance and Convergence: Francophone and Métis Strategies of Identity in Western Canada” conference in 2005. The main focus is the tree located in front of the church at Batoche, a significant and historic Métis site in Saskatchewan. This was the location of the Battle of Batoche during the North-West Rebellion of 1885, and the surrender of leader Louis Riel after the defeat of the Métis and First Nations by Canadian forces. Riel was executed 6 months later, at the North West Mounted Police barracks in Regina. The heart in the tree represents the interrelationship between the Francophone and Métis peoples of the Prairies. The red blood represents Francophones and the blue blood, the Métis.