FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Oujé-Bougoumou, QC), April 4, 2012: Aanischaaukamikw Cree Cultural Institute proudly announces its Grand Opening and Cree Nation Cultural Celebration from June 7 to 9, 2012. A three day celebration co-hosted by the UN award-winning community of Oujé-Bougoumou, QC, Aanischaaukamikw will open its doors to the entire world, inviting visitors from near and far to participate in a rich cultural experience centred around this breathtaking new addition to the Canadian museum landscape. A special Opening Ceremony, to be attended by leaders from government, industry, and the worldwide cultural community will be held on June 8, 2012.
Aanischaaukamikw, which was quietly launched in a moving Dedication Ceremony on November 15, 2011, is a unique and beautiful architectural space holding a museum, archive, library, and teaching and cultural areas. It serves as the James Bay Crees’ primary facility for the preservation and conservation of documents, media, and physical objects and is the ultimate expression of the vision of Cree Elders who recognized the need to capture and maintain Cree traditional knowledge. Aanischaaukamikw exists to foster and support the process of aanschaa or cultural continuity, acting as a conduit for the sharing of the unique art, music, legends, artifacts, and ways of the Crees.
The inaugural exhibition showcases artefacts that range from the ancient to recent past. Sources of immense pride, these objects demonstrate our connection to the land and clearly show how our system of values and beliefs is derived from this special relationship.
The theme of the Grand Opening event pays homage to our past, present and future with scheduled activities designed to be reflective of each period. The unique flavor and personality of each of the nine Cree communities will be on display – to be seen and heard and sampled by all. “The Past” will focus on the traditional elements of our ancient culture. Some examples include storytelling by elders, needlework and wood carving demonstrations, traditional foods cooked over an open fire, and of course fiddle music and dance. “The Present” expands on this concept but includes cultural and artistic variations adapted from neighbouring nations, while “The Future” presents a platform for our region’s musicians and artists of all mediums from which to display their awesome talents. All three days will also provide visitors with a chance to personally experience the exceptional exhibit, collections and cultural programs on-site and at Ouje-Bougoumou’s cultural village.
Situated between the towns of Chibougamau and Chapais, the Institute is easily reached by air and major roadways. Visitors can expect nothing less than a truly unique, rich cultural event as we rejoice in the amazing accomplishment that is Aanischaaukamikw.