Artist taps into nature and her own roots for latest art show

A woman stand besides a painting
Melissa Labrador with one of her paintings on display at the Astor Theatre. Photo by Ed Halverson.
Ed Halverson - CJQC/QCCR - LiverpoolNS | 06-08-2021

An art exhibit at the Astor Theatre hopes to educate visitors about the need to connect with our natural environment.

Artist and Indigenous Guardian Melissa Labrador calls the show “N’in L’nu."

“So it’s N’in L’nu which [means] I’m L’nu. L’nu is who we are as Mi’kmaq people and then I did North, South, East and West because regardless of where I am on the earth, I am who I am and that doesn’t change,’ said Labrador.

A self-taught painter whose work is inspired by her relationship with Mother Earth, Labrador said, “a lot of my art focuses on that connection. It incorporates stories and traditions of my ancestors, my family, my people and also things that are important that we pay mind to as our climate is changing and the world that world that we know is changing everyday.”

Labrador says she tries to balance the negative messages of climate change with the positive experience of getting out and connecting of nature.

A series of blue paintings hang on a gallery wall

Some of the paintings on display at the Astor Theatre as part of Melissa Labrador's N'in L'nu art show. Photo by Ed Halverson.

Many of the figures in this show are inspired by the petroglyphs found in Kejimkujik and images of whales and stars also feature heavily in the collection.

So much of what is happening in artist’s life goes into their work and Labrador tries to ensure when a piece of art finds its forever home the owner has the best impression.

“With everything that I create, I try to have a positive message there,” said Labrador, “So when the person or persons are taking that piece with them, they will feel that positive energy that went into creating that.”

Labrador’s N’in L’nu art show is on display at the Astor Theatre until the end of August.

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