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Culture Days will return September 20 – October 13, 2024.

April Dawn-95


Design Indigenous Poetry & spoken word Sculpture & installation Visual arts
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This activity runs the duration of Culture Days.


522 Sargent Avenue

Winnipeg, MB

Directions: This installation can be viewed in a physically-distanced way through the windows from outside the building between September 24 - October 24.



Offered in English.

Wheelchair accessible.


Interior painted all black, in the centre is a chalkboard with a piece of chalk and an eraser all painted orange with a piece that I wrote written in black.

After a 20-year absence I returned to the University of Manitoba fall of 2019 to complete my BFA. In that absence, I was the village bicycle of kitchens, working in many restaurants across Winnipeg while continuing my series of oil paintings of movie moments titled "Really Really Good Fan Art".

After reading about the number of growing bodies of children being discovered on the many residential schoolgrounds, I was deeply affected by the horrifying reality. It brought something out of me that I was never ready to deal with. It could have been me. My name on my adoption papers was April Dawn-95. I was adopted from birth into the whitest family ever. No religion or ethnicity. We’re just good people that like our canned pineapple with green jello. It was always encouraged that I seek out my ancestry. I never felt ready, I had to figure out my own identity as me before I stood as part of any group. Being able to finish my degree on my terms was what guided me through that. I had to find my voice before I could speak. I needed a reason to speak, running water shouldn’t be a luxury.



Illuminate the Night presents Deanna Davis

I've always wanted to be a part of Nuit Blanche, I had planned for my submission to be full of bells and whistles covered in glitter with lights and a fog machine, a vanity project. After learning more and more information about the residential schools, anything flashy would be in poor taste. I feel a sense of responsibility to this.

As an Indigenous person, reading about the residential schools has affected me deeply. On a personal level I was adopted from birth, the name on my birth certificate before it was changed to Deanna Davis was April Dawn-95.

-- Each year, the "Illuminate the Night" open call is held for artists to propose pieces that will enthrall, excite and possibly introduce Winnipeggers to something they have never seen or experienced before at Nuit Blanche. Projects are selected by a jury of artists and art professionals and are featured in Winnipeg’s downtown core. --


This event is part of a hub:

Nuit Blanche Winnipeg 2021

Nuit Blanche Winnipeg - Produced by Culture Days Manitoba Winnipeg, MB

Nuit Blanche Winnipeg is a free nighttime exploration and celebration of contemporary art where artists, galleries, cultural organizations and independent curators create and host their own events around the city. These events are FREE to t...