Forced Migration: Bison stories and what they can tell settlers about a past, present, and future on stolen land
As uninvited guests on Indigenous land, we are continually told that national parks, and our conservation system in general, are a benevolent inheritance from our settler ancestors. The creators of parks and conservation societies crafted archives in the form of magazines and biographies to document the salvation of charismatic species like the bison. In this episode, artist and researcher Michelle Wilson mines these archives to create alternative stories of the bison’s path to conservation. These audio essays reveal how ideologies around capitalism, human exceptionalism, and white supremacy have influenced settler relations to the more-than-human world.
In this episode, we will hear from poet Síle Englert who helped distill Michelle’s more extended essays into these shorter, affective pieces of prose, and musician and composer Angus Cruikshank whose score enriches Michelle’s audio storytelling.
Michelle’s project seeks to extract narratives from a white supremacist, patriarchal written tradition and play with the immediate and affective possibilities of audio performance and sound design.
The audio artworks featured in this episode were originally created as part of Michelle’s interactive textile map “Forced Migration”. It is on view at Museum London as part of the GardenShip and State exhibition until January 23rd, 2022.
- Producer – Michelle Wilson
- Script editing and interviewScript editing and interview – Síle Englert
- Sound design and interview – Angus Cruikshank
- Vocal performance – Pat Rousseau and Paul Chartrand