The REDress Undertaking set up. (Photograph Credit score: ABC Information)

Shade has lengthy been used to suggest social and political standing and to convey different vital messages with out saying a phrase. In the course of the Byzantine period, solely royals might put on the colour purple, which represented rarity, piety, magic, and thriller. Within the Center Ages, pink symbolized the blood of Christ and was worn by kings to suggest their God-given proper to rule. In keeping with Hannah Craggs, senior colour editor at trend-forecasting consultancy WGSN, “All through historical past, colour has been used as a software of self-expression and peaceable protest.”


demonstrators wearing pink pussyhats

Girls carrying pink pussyhats as a part of the 2017 anti-Trump Girls’s March motion. (Photograph credit score: Wire)

In current day phrases, we solely want to take a look at the primary Girls’s March in January 2017, whereby hundreds of thousands of ladies and their allies banded collectively globally carrying pink pussyhats as a visual image of protest to the Trump presidency. On the seventy fifth Golden Globe Awards in 2018, the colour black was strategically worn by feminine actors to help the #TimesUp motion. In 2019, ladies politicians wore white to the State of the Union as a solution to honor suffragists, whereas additionally making a pointed assertion in regards to the landmark variety of ladies elected to the US Congress. And right this moment, the colour purple, utilized by Alice Walker and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie of their novels, The Shade Purple and Purple Hibiscus, is used to suggest and sign a brand new awakening and rebirth of their characters.

In final week’s UoF weblog entitled Threads of Unity, we mentioned Kirstie Macleod’s Pink Costume Undertaking, a pink gown that took 14 years to finish and was stitched collectively by the arms of 380 embroidery artisans, throughout 51 nations.

In the present day, we’ll give attention to the REDress Undertaking, Nationwide Ribbon Skirt Day and the Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking, initiatives that draw consideration to the lacking and murdered Indigenous ladies (MMIW) epidemic in america and Canada.

The REDress Undertaking

Video of The REDress Undertaking on the Nationwide Museum of the American Indian. (Video Credit score: YouTube, Smithsonian NMAI)

Image a panorama adorned with pink clothes hanging from bushes, billowing within the wind like ghostly echoes of untold tales. The REDress Undertaking, conceived by artist Jaime Black, is a public artwork set up that started in 2010, and that breathes life right into a poignant image geared toward elevating consciousness in regards to the staggering variety of lacking and murdered Indigenous ladies(MMIW) throughout North America.

The REDress Undertaking set up on the College of Winnipeg. (Photograph Credit score: Nationwide Museum of the American Indian)

Every pink gown, rigorously chosen or donated, represents a life misplaced or a lady nonetheless lacking. The set up artwork venture serves as a visible reminder, difficult communities to confront the tough realities confronted by Indigenous ladies. The selection of the colour pink is deliberate – the artist selected the colour after conversations with an indigenous pal, who informed her that pink is the one colour the spirits can see. “So (pink) is known as a calling again of the spirits of those ladies and permitting them an opportunity to be amongst us and have their voices heard via their members of the family and neighborhood”, Jaime Black informed CTV information. The artist has additionally advised “pink symbolizes each vitality and violence” in line with The Washington Submit.

As these empty clothes sway within the wind, they carry with them the load of numerous narratives, invoking a name to motion for justice and systemic change. The REDress Undertaking transcends its creative origins, changing into a robust voice for Indigenous communities advocating for the protection and well-being of their ladies.

The REDress Undertaking set up on the Seaforth Peace Park, Vancouver, Canada. (Photograph Credit score: Wipkipedia)

The venture has impressed different artists to make use of pink to attract consideration to the problem of MMIW, and prompted the creation of Pink Costume Day, which happens on Could 5th. The primary Pink Costume Day was noticed in 2010 and is a day to honor and produce consciousness to the 1000’s of Indigenous ladies and women, who’ve gone lacking or who’ve been murdered.

Nationwide Ribbon Skirt Day

Isabella Kulak was the middle across the Nationwide Ribbon Skirt Day Motion. (Photograph Credit score: CBC Information)

Amidst the sobering echoes of the REDress Undertaking, a day of celebration and cultural delight emerged – Nationwide Ribbon Skirt Day. This occasion is noticed on January 4th and was first celebrated in 2023. The day was impressed by Isabella Kulak, an Indigenous lady in Saskatchewan who was humiliated for carrying a conventional ribbon skirt to a proper gown day at her elementary faculty in 2020.

The ribbon skirt, a conventional garment worn by Indigenous ladies, serves as a testomony to the energy and spirit of Indigenous cultures. It embodies a connection to heritage, land, and neighborhood. Pink Ribbon Skirt Day invitations people to don this symbolic garment, fostering a way of unity and delight inside Indigenous communities.

The Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking

The Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking goals to assist grieving Indigenous households heal. (Photograph Credit score: APTN Information)

Complementing Nationwide Ribbon Skirt Day is the Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking, a grassroots motion that empowers Indigenous ladies via artwork and storytelling. This initiative encourages ladies to create and share their very own pink ribbon skirts, every adorned with private symbols and tales that replicate their distinctive journeys.

The Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking transforms the pink ribbon skirt right into a canvas of empowerment, giving a voice to those that have been silenced for too lengthy. By way of the creation of those symbolic clothes, ladies reclaim their narratives and have a good time the energy inherent of their identification.

In keeping with the Museum on Vancouver, “ribbon skirts and clothes have been worn by Indigenous ladies in Canada for the reason that early 1800s. Giant quantities of ribbon have been imported by the Hudson’s Bay Firm within the nineteenth Century for the Indigenous wives of fur merchants and their kids. The clothes made with ribbon has grow to be an necessary a part of Indigenous tradition. Ribbon clothes proceed to characterize the wearer’s identification and are seen as symbols of resilience.”

Jamie Smallboy cuts material to make a pink ribbon skirt at Strathcona Neighborhood Centre in Vancouver. (Photograph Credit score: APTN Information)

Jamie Smallboy/Nohtikwew pisim is Plains Cree however lives in Vancouver. In 2019, she started the Pink Sisters Gathering, a bunch that sews pink ribbon skirts for the households of Murdered and Lacking Indigenous Girls and Ladies—and the skirts have been worn on the Girls’s Memorial March in Vancouver on Feb. 14, 2022. In 2021, Smallboy additionally based the non-profit society Sweetgrass Sisters Therapeutic, which now administers the Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking.  Beneath is a video to be taught extra in regards to the motion.

Video of the Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking. (Video Courtesy of YouTube, Museum of Vancouver)

In a world the place the echoes of the REDress Undertaking linger, and the Nationwide Ribbon Skirt Day and Pink Ribbon Skirt Undertaking flourish, the facility of pink turns into a unifying pressure. It’s a hue that transcends sorrow whereas embodying the resilience, delight, and energy of Indigenous communities. By way of artwork, colour, activism, and cultural celebration, these initiatives invite us to pay attention, be taught, and stand in solidarity with those that have lengthy been marginalized.

To be taught extra about colour, colour idea and colour relationships, view these classes: on the UoF web site:

Shade Relationships                                                                         Shade Concept-The Fundamentals

poster frame images of color lesson on UoF website

So, inform us, how has colour impressed your work?