Wampum & Historiography (Module 4-Post 5)


How beadwork and art is used to tell contemporary stories and across cultures with Wampum-an aboriginal story-telling methods. It is interesting to think of visual arts and crafts as historiographies. Wampum alone challenges the existing written forms as the only “valid” records of our history.

“CBC: Carolina Echeverria, you asked artists participating in the Beadwork exhibit to draw inspiration from the aboriginal story-telling method called Wampum. What is Wampum?

Carolina Echeverria: Wampum is a method that Native people have used to record things like peace treaties, which took white people thousands of pages to write. First Nations people condensed it all into one beaded image. The flip side is that Canadians often did not respect the treaties, because they said they were not written. But a wampum is in fact a written record…”


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