“My work may not be displayed in museums and galleries, but it does go on display every weekend from New Brunswick all the way to California and everywhere in between.”
I am an Ojibwe artist specializing in the area of custom beadwork and regalia making. I have been actively creating for 27 years. I consider myself to be a self-taught multi disciplinary artist. Powwow and it's culture is my main inspiration that has fuelled my artistic career. Among all things, beadwork is my passion. I enjoy experimenting with different types of beads, colors, and patterns. I have experience with both geometric and floral beadworking but being of Ojibwe decent, floral is what defines me. I enjoy incorporating natural components that were used historically, such as: shells, horse hair, porupine hair, quills, brass studs, bones, and birchbark. My work is well known for its quailty and use of color. My skills have definitely evolved over the last 2 decades and have since made a shift toward the older style of Ojibwe beadwork and patterns. My work may not be displayed in museums and galleries, but it does go on display every weekend from New Brunswick all the way to California and everywhere in between. I don’t have a degreee in fine arts, nor have I taken any formal arts training. My skills and artisitc abilities are those that cannot be learned in a classroom. It is the result of a lifetime of dedication, practise and a commitment to preservation. It is artwork that is admired by all people but most valued by my people. I will continue to challenge my abilities, nurture my gifts and preserve our culture through the arts.
Shannon Gustafson is an Ojibwe fine craft artist from Fort William First Nation, Ontario.