Piikani and Kainai, AB
“We are the ancestors of the future, and that’s something we shouldn’t take lightly.”
Award-winning producer, director, and actor Cowboy Smithx is a nationally-recognized advocate for Indigenous arts & culture, bringing Indigenous artistic voices – particularly those of Indigenous youth – to the forefront. He is the founder and curator of REDx Talks, an acclaimed not-for-profit speaker series focusing on Indigenous issues in Canada and around the world. Among his many notable creations are the Iiniistsi Treaty Arts Society, a non-profit organization dedicated to activating the true spirit and intent of Treaty 7; Artsdance, a Treaty 7-based gathering which creates a fusion of community-building and arts programming; and the Noirfoot School for Cinematic Arts, which gathers professional film industry talent to provide opportunities for youth to learn the art of storytelling and the fundamentals of the digital filmmaking process.
Cowboy’s work as an educator, artist, and cultural guide has taken him around the world; he has been a keynote presenter at over 150 international conferences, symposia, and festivals, and he facilitates dozens of interactive workshops for professionals, artists, youth, and Elders. He is deeply committed to sharing Indigenous history with a wide audience and opening up dialogue for Indigenous people.