Installation of spider hanging on web upon a brick wall.
Installation panel of spider hanging on web.

Asibikaashi (Spider Woman)

August 4, 2021

Asibikaashi (Spider Woman) celebrates restoration and connectivity through the Anishinaabe story of Spider Woman. In the artist's words:

"Spider Woman helped bring Grandfather Sun back to the people. You can see it in the webs before dawn - every day she weaves a new lodge and captures the light of the sunrise in the filaments and sparkling dew gathered on her webs.

"It is in the dreamcatcher that Anishinaabe women weave where we remember Spider Woman and how she protects us and our babies. Made with eight connection points, we remember her legs, and placed on a round of willow, we remember Grandfather Sun. The bad dreams get caught in the webs, and the good ones come through the centre. And just like the sun evaporates the dew on her webs, the bad dreams disintegrate with dawn.

"The spider lurks in dark corners, cleaning our homes of pests. She builds her webs, trapping the things that could bite us and hurt us. In the natural world, she builds her webs where mosquitoes and flying insects are most abundant, and traps and feeds on them. Spiders are not to be feared, but protected and respected."

A work commissioned in the context of the pandemic, Asibikaashi functions as both a protective guardian and a call for sensitivity to the interconnected nature of our world. As the spider senses movement through her web, so too are we asked to remain attuned to the many threads of thought and action that draw us together.