Claxton’s LED fireboxes are a testament to the beauty and resilience of Indigenous women. In these portraits the face of each sitter is subsumed by their cultural belongings—layers of beaded necklaces, embroidered bags, fringed hairpieces, and quilled earrings, implying an identity formed by relations and exchange. Most of the belongings were gifts, suggesting the extent to which each woman’s identity has been shaped by kinship. The items reflect the care and labour of their making, as well as their roots in Indigenous trade, stretching back hundreds of years.

Commissioned in part by the Toronto Biennial of Art and made possible with generous support from Michelle Koerner and Kevin Doyle.


Dana Claxton (Hunkpapa Lakota (Sioux), born in Yorkton, SK, Canada; lives in Vancouver, BC, Canada) works in film, video, photography, single- and multi-channel video installation, and performance art. Her practice investigates beauty, the body, the socio-political, and the spiritual. Claxton’s work has been shown internationally at venues including: Museum of Modern Art, New York City; Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis; Sundance Film Festival; Eiteljorg Museum; and Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. Claxton’s first major survey show opened at the Vancouver Art Gallery in 2018. She is Department Head and Associate Professor in the Department of Visual Art at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver.


  • Accessibility

    259 Lake Shore Blvd East

    Accessible entrance and washrooms
    AODA compliant building
    Accessible parking

  • Getting There

    259 Lake Shore Blvd East

    By Public Transportation: The TTC offers three bus routes – the 6, 72, and 75 – within a short walking distance of 259 Lakeshore Blvd.

    By Car:

    • Coming from the West: Follow Gardiner Expressway E to the Jarvis Street exit. Keep right and follow the signs for Lake Shore Blvd E eastbound. Turn right onto Lower Sherbourne Street, then left onto Queens Quay E, where the destination is on the left.
    • Coming from the East:Take Lake Shore Blvd E eastbound towards the downtown core. Turn left onto Parliament St, and continue onto Queens Quay E, where the destination is on the right.

Donors & Supporters

Michelle Koerner and Kevin Doyle