The Murals of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada: Murals
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Displaying Locations 306-310 of 615


31 Marlene Street (1)    Location Map

"Keeping Our Land".

Location: North Face

Occupant: Manitoba Housing

District: St. Vital

Neighbourhood: Lavalee

Artist(s): Jimmy D. Harper

Year: 2002

Sponsors: Marlene Street Kids Program


Jane Brenner (Marlene Street Kids Program): "Jimmy Harper is an awesome artist. We actually hired in him to run an aboriginal art class out of Lavallee School. He was teaching kids between eight and 12 to do aboriginal artwork. He did these two Murals free (the other is 9 Marlene Street); we supplied all the paint and he did it all on his own. He's an awesome artist; and nobody's touched or tagged them- they're all still intact."

"He's very soft-spoken, Jimmy. It's very hard to hear him when he talks. But when he talks about his artwork, he's a little louder. He's a real gentle man. It's surprising how talented he is for his age. He started with pencil a long time ago, doodling. One thing led to another, and as he was getting older, his elders were teaching him what all the stuff meant, and then he started to paint it on his own. He never had any art classes or anything else like that ever. He's done some beautiful work."

Jimmy Harper: "I started getting involved with the Marlene Street Kids and showed my artwork to the kids program and the Tenants Association. The teepees represent the Marlene Street community. At the time I did this wall I would say that aboriginals made up about 70% of the population at Marlene Street so I thought this was fitting. I was working with the kids so it took about double my time-about two weeks. The weather also slowed me down."

"I named this Mural 'Keeping Our Land', because there's always someone watching over us; and the spiritual Eagles represent the creators or creator. I put two eagles out there because on earth there's always two: man and woman, a bird or an animal; there's always two of it. Day or night they watch over us. This scene is actually a transition between day and night, it's set at dusk. The seven teepees I put up there were represent my family; there are seven of us. The colours of the teepees represent my interpretation of life. The black outlining represents your youth (human being or young animal), the dark brown signifies you become mature, the lighter brown indicates you've become very old and white part signifies you're passing away and becoming a white spirit. That's what my beliefs are in life."