Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway

Buffalo, Resilience, Breathe

Artist Statement

I am a multi-disciplinary artist and I created this mask from buffalo parfleche. My husband, Lorne and I work with buffalo hides to create parfleche and robes. I painted my version of crocuses and buffaloes. I stitched the two parfleche pieces together using red sinew and ribbon. The inside of the mask is lined with red buffalo leather. Maria Linklater shared a story about how when a baby buffalo is born a crocus sprouts up in the spot where the baby buffalo belly button drops. I love this story and incorporate crocuses with my buffalo whenever I can. I love using red because it reminds me of strong, resilient Indigenous women and it is associated with passion and fire. Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway, Nakota/Cree/Saulteaux from the White Bear First Nations in SK.

Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway Buffalo, Resilience, Breathe

111 Bear Street, Banff, Alberta, T1L 1A3, Canada

T: 1 403 762 2291   

E: info [at]

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The Whyte Museum gratefully acknowledges the support of The Peter and Catharine Whyte Foundation and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts

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