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Daphne Odjig

Arts (1998)

Daphne Odjig, born on the Wikwemikong Unceded Reserve on Manitoulin Island, was never expected to pursue a career as an artist, even though her talent was apparent when she was a child. Now, her artwork is shown in museums, galleries and art collections throughout Canada and the world. But it wasn’t until the 1960s, with her pen and ink drawings of the Cree people of northern Manitoba, that the art world first took notice. Since then, she has had over 30 solo exhibitions and been part of over 50 group exhibitions throughout her illustrious career. Her work has been collected by organizations like the Canada Council’s Art Bank, the National Museum of Man in Ottawa, the Tom Thompson Gallery, the McMichael Canadian Collection, and the Government of Israel. She has been commissioned by Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan, the Manitoba Museum of Man and Nature, and the Israeli airline, El Al. Ms. Odjig was the subject of three documentaries, and received many honours, including an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Laurentian University in 1982, and an Honorary Doctorate of Law from the University of Toronto in 1985, the Order of Canada in 1986, a Commemorative Medal for the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada in 1992 and an Honorary Doctorate of Education from Nipissing University in 1997. Ms. Odjig was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Art in 1989.