Archive for Métis

The 20th Wellness Show

Posted in All, Credits & Appearances with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 17, 2012 by Monique Hurteau

Monique Hurteau & Lorne Cardinal will be presenting a Humour For Health workshop on the Living Well stage, sponsored in part by Fresh Magazine, on Saturday February 18, 2012 at The 20th Annual Wellness Show at the Vancouver Convention Centre!!

Want to book a Humour For Health workshop? Click here!

I’m on ReVision Quest on CBC Radio One

Posted in Aboriginal, All, Artists, Artwork, Cool Stuff, Credits & Appearances, Métis, Press, Stand Up Comedy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 25, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

Thanks to Kim Ziervogel for calling me to take part in ReVision Quest on CBC Radio One hosted by Darrell Dennis; this show is called “Humour: what’s so funny about being Native?”

Click here to listen to the Aug 25, 2010 show. The part that I’m on is at about 17:41 but the whole show is good though!

I’ll definitely write more about being an Aboriginal comedian but, for now, will say that it has been interesting and challenging indeed. When I say I’m Aboriginal and a comedian, seems there is often an expectation I’m going to do “Bannock, Bingo & Rez Dogs” and lots of Native stereotypes the whole time. I don’t.

I find the best way to describe what I do is that I’m an Aboriginal person who does mainstream comedy. I do have jokes about my Aboriginal-ness and other Native-related things but I don’t push myself to do material on anything in particular. What I do depends on many things – the audience, what seems appropriate (comedy club vs. corporate gig) and/or if it is an Aboriginal event or not.

A big thing for me, I don’t want to be disingenuous. I’m not going to force myself to manufacture a certain amount of ‘Aboriginal’ content to try to emulate something only because it is sometimes (or often) expected of me. Feels dishonest and it’s not authentic. I’m trying to do things in ways that feel right for me because that’s when I’m at my best.

Reminds me of a talk with artist Brian Joseph Grandbois. He does a lot of traditional Aboriginal art work and some non-traditional. Apparently, he painted a Monarch butterfly on a drum and an art broker told him it wasn’t Aboriginal. Really? Huh. I guess I get where the broker is coming from but I also find that idea horribly stifling for an artist to have any suggestion they shouldn’t be creative in certain areas because it doesn’t fit someone else’s paradigm. Knowing Brian’s work, I’m sure it was a gorgeous butterfly…so what’s the problem with that?!?!!!

There are many comedians who do what might be deemed more to be “Native comedy” than what I do. Many are hilarious and get great laughs doing what they do too! Vive la difference!! That is what is so beautiful about creativity and individuality; there are SO many ways to be artistic and funny.

For me, I like to go wherever my creativity takes me. I’m often surprised by it too ;-P

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New pencils=Ugly Sister & Platform Cheese Shoe

Posted in All, Artwork, Stand Up Comedy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 15, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

It was an exciting Friday night and I just bought some new pencils and had to use them right away.

I have always loved the painting hanging on my living room wall of a dark-haired girl in a blue dress; I bought it at a thrift store over 10 years ago for only a few dollars.

Here’s the painting with the sketch (done with my new pencils!).

Comparing the two, I decided to call mine “Ugly Sister”

She is smarter. She’s never been considered quite as attractive as her sister. She’s always overlooked.

Still looking for inspired ways to use my new pencils I thought of the recent Facebook story I told…

I posted this video, with this caption, “Most people don’t know that I used to do the voice of Rusty in The Friendly Giant. Also, I can do a round-off back handspring while wearing platform shoes made out of cheese.”

Some guy actually wanted to ‘set the record straight’ to which I responded “Yes, I’m sure gymnastics in dairy footwear made this completely plausible, along with me being a comedian.”

Anyhooooo, I decided to bring the shoes more to life!
Here’s the result…

Platform Cheese Shoe Prototype

Ready for mainstream consumption…


Voila, a Platform Cheese Shoe!

I quite enjoyed doing these sketches. I have a bunch of ideas for other projects. I am truly filled with excitement to do them too!

I just started getting into drawing ‘n stuff again fairly recently. Read more here about a key moment with an acrylic painting kit (for ages 5+!) that got me rolling.

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My Comedy Kick on Shore FM

Posted in All, Credits & Appearances, Stand Up Comedy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 12, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

Thanks to Colleen Brow of Mornings on the Shore for the invitation to do a Comedy Kick on Shore 104.3fm!

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There is an antichrist, her name is Paula

Posted in Aboriginal, All, Métis with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 31, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

And she lives in Thunder Bay, ON.  I thought I should warn the rest of the world. She’s a nasty, mean-spirited thing I had the displeasure of coming across on Facebook.  I think she missed the whole point of being FB ‘friends’, clearly demonstrated when she posted a bunch of poisonous hatred all over my profile, notes and status updates.

If that were all she’d done I certainly wouldn’t be posting this, she’s not worth the time.  No, it’s because she decided to try and bash me by saying I’m the whitest native she’s ever seen. Good for you Paula!  Excellent point and vivid demonstration of the kind of person you are. Ironically, in her pictures, Paula is as pale as I am which in some ways I find quite hilarious.

Overall though, it’s very sad to witness this kind of toxic rage. I’m sharing this because this kind of racist crap goes on and so many people don’t talk about it. It’s ugly. Thankfully, I very rarely experience this kind of thing from other Aboriginal people. However, I have experienced it on a few occasions and it’s not ok in the slightest.

I am mixed blood. I am Metis, First Nations – Cree, Ojibway, Mohawk, Blackfoot, Okanagan – and French. My grandma was born on the Muskowekwan Reserve in Saskatchewan; she and her siblings were forced in to residential school. I won’t be apologizing for my heritage or my skin colour any time soon, especially to a hate-mongering racist.

I wish Paula well in her life as I think she really needs it.

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My Weird Landlord

Posted in All, Randomish-like with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 15, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

I came home last Sunday night after doing a comedy gig and youth workshop for the Bridge River Indian Band near Lillooet. It was gorgeous there.

I walk into the front foyer of my building and here’s the note I found posted on the office door for all to see…

This is pretty much par for the course. Ok, this is slightly weirder than the normal level of weird (which is off the charts already).

I’ll let the site speak for itself. Check it out www.MyWeirdLandlord.com and you can ‘like’ My Weird Landlord Facebook Page too!

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Brian Joseph Grandbois: A talented First Nations artist I just met

Posted in Aboriginal, All, ARTindigenous, Artists, Artwork, Cool Stuff, Randomish-like with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

UPDATE — check out Brian Joseph Grandbois at ARTindigenous

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This past Thursday I was at Drive By Comedy at Zawa on Commercial Drive.  Two friends of mine, Carter Hortie and Paul Breau run the show every Thu @ 9:30pm at 920 Commercial Drive, Vancouver, BC on the corner of Venables. You should go check it out!

Anyhoooo, I keep meeting all sorts of really wonderful and talented artists.  Many brilliant artists , for various reasons, may not have the opportunity to showcase what they do (via the internet, etc) and get their name and works out there as widely as they’d like.

The artist I just met, Brian Joseph Grandbois, chooses to spend his time on his art (not obsessively on the internet like someone else).  He’s a wise man.

BIO: Brian J. Grandbois

Brian J. Grandbois is of Dene Suline (Chipewyan) descent. He was raised by his grandparents on the Cold Lake Reserve in North Eastern Alberta.

Brian was able to learn the rich culture and language of his people from his grandparents and other elders. These teachings included the arts and traditional stories that were passed down from generation to generation. He was influenced by fellow Cold Lake native artists such as Alex Janvier. Brian did not limit his experiences and travels to just Dene People, but to numerous Native Nations in North America – Canada, US & Mexico. His works can be viewed at various native art outlets in western Canada.

I put together a downloadable bio in PDF format too

We had a brief chat that night at Zawa and made plans to meet up the next day so I could see his work.   We met and had a fantastic discussion about art and all sorts of things. His artwork is beautiful.

Trust me when I say my terrible photography doesn’t do Brian’s work justice. Some of it looks airbrushed…it’s not. As Brian told me, “it’s Indian airbrushing!” He dabs acrylic paint on with a sponge with such precision…you’d swear it’s airbrushing if you saw it up close.  Please note, I have obtained explicit permission to post these pictures.

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© 2010 Brian Joseph Grandbois
Images may not be used, distributed, printed or reproduced in any manner without express written consent.

Having a bigger audience for Brian’s work should, hopefully, lead to more opportunities for him.  I have some things in the works to take this idea further for Brian and other artists. In the meantime, enjoy Brian’s beautiful artwork (gallery below) and please contact him if you see something you like!  Brian will be VERY happy to hear from you :-)

Meegwetch ~ Thank you
Monique Hurteau

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PLEASE NOTE
Brian Joseph Grandbois retains full copyright to his works and the images of his artwork may not be used, distributed, printed or reproduced in any manner without Brian Joseph Grandbois’ express written consent.   Please respect artists’ rights to their work.

CONTACT
Brian J. Grandbois
cell 780-812-6873 or 604-894-3386

COPYRIGHT
© 2010 Brian Joseph Grandbois
Images may not be used, distributed, printed or reproduced in any manner without express written consent.

Keynotes & Workshops & Comedy oh my!

Posted in Aboriginal, All, Bid-ness, Métis, Physical Activity, Randomish-like, Stand Up Comedy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 2, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

Egad! I worked on this thing for WAY too long today.  I’ll probably still make more changes.  Can’t help myself.

Clickable version or Downloadable/Clickable PDF

Lame Sequel Ideas: The Indian Status Card in the Closet

Posted in Aboriginal, All, Métis with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 26, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

Métis? You might want to keep your status card in the closet

Recently, I spoke to someone – a Métis someone – at a Métis gathering/event.  There was a variety of people – both Métis and otherwise – in attendance.  I spoke to this Métis someone about the Sharon McIvor case, my potential eligibility for Indian status and the possibility of my application for said status once the amendments to the Indian Act go through.  I was fully aware that it may come across as provocative to the person but I was very curious what would be said.  The reply “I wouldn’t say that here.” Really?

What does that mean exactly?  If I’m ‘found out’ to be a status Indian, what’s going to happen to me?  What? I’ll be punished for being honest and forthright? Carrying a different card in my wallet will magically wipe out my Métis ancestry?  Really, what did they mean?  Am I supposed to keep it hidden and only reveal what card I carry when it’s ‘safe’?

How is keeping things like that in the closet – or a cupboard – helpful in any way?  Isn’t transparency and openness something to genuinely strive for?  Considering the ever-churning Métis political landscape – especially in BC as of late – and ongoing accusations of deception, corruption, nepotism and misappropriation – honesty should be welcomed.  Secrecy about this kind of stuff keeps people down.  However, some like it that way because it helps maintain and protect the status quo.

It sometimes seems that in the heated fight for Métis distinction – separation has become the way.  There wouldn’t be any Métis people without First Nations and Inuit.  Yes, there are major struggles for Métis recognition, rights and distinction, etc. but is lying about what governmental category one happens to be in helpful? I certainly don’t think so.  Is this part of a fixed-pie mentality?  Wherever it comes from, it’s a shame because First Nations, Inuit and Métis are struggling with so many of the same issues. We would be so much stronger united.

My idealism and realism are constantly at odds.  So, as a pragmatist, I definitely won’t be holding my breath for change to happen but I’m not going to give up hope that things will eventually change.

My latest artwork: The Shitty Facilitator

Posted in Aboriginal, All, Artwork, Métis, Randomish-like with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 21, 2010 by Monique Hurteau

I have been having a lot of fun expressing myself in mediums other than stand-up comedy as of late.  It’s quite evident that what’s in my head and what comes out on paper and canvas are substantially different. Well, let’s just say it’s as if my hand is possessed.

Some time ago, a friend and I were in a workshop where we had to sketch each other.  A big thanks to my friend for her very kind comments about my sketch of her (below). Please note that she doesn’t look like this at all. She is a very attractive woman – unlike my depiction.

Recently, in place of a human, I inadvertently drew what resembled a pant-less peanut wearing a nice t-shirt.  I’m learning to embrace the hilarity of my lack of control in my artwork (I use the term loosely).  Mostly, I find a lack of control quite unfunny…mostly.  IMPORTANT NOTE: Coincidentally, my friend referred to earlier is a facilitator. However, she is a WONDERFUL facilitator and most definitely not the facilitator depicted in the works below.

Here’s my latest catharses…

Above In real life, Shitty Facilitator’s buttocks wasn’t this ample.  Actually, it was concave.

Above Almost fixed the concave buttocks; I regret that I don’t have his pants pulled up as high as he had them in real life.

Like I said before, painting and sketching get me out of my head for a while.  That’s a GREAT thing and much needed.

I have lots of other ideas lined up for my next pieces.  I will continue to share – well, most of them.  Go pick up a painting kit, crayons or even a set of dollar-store paints…it’s lots of fun.

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