Teresa Vander Meer-Chassé
Teresa Vander Meer-Chassé (b. 1992) is a proud member of the White River First Nation of Beaver Creek, Yukon, Canada and Alaska. Her beadwork is inspired by the strong women in her life, her mother, aunts, and grandmothers and the support of the caring men in her life, her partner, father, uncles, cousins, and grandfathers. Teresa is mostly a self-taught artist however her Grandma Marilyn, an Upper Tanana Elder and residential school Survivor, encouraged her to start by providing her with supplies, examples, and templates. The purpose of the residential schools was to strip Indigenous children of their culture and amalgamate them into “society.” Many Survivors of the schools had to relearn their languages and cultures, including Teresa’s Grandmother. Knowing the importance of cultural revitalization Teresa’s Grandmother encouraged her to bead and sew.
Teresa defines herself as an Upper Tanana contemporary visual artist. She primarily works with beads, hides, bones, quills, and antlers. Her collection includes beaded and quilled hubcaps, a beaded pylon and shoe, quilled deer skull, etc. Teresa incorporates her Upper Tanana culture in all the work she creates. She is not afraid of being different and ensures each piece she creates is unique and imaginative.
In 2016, Teresa received a prestigious YVR Youth Scholarship award. The artwork created with the scholarship has now been accepted into the Yukon Permanent Art Collection.
Currently, Teresa is the artist-in-residence at Jenni House in Whitehorse, Yukon and is completing a collaboration with Nicole Bauberger. In the fall of 2017, Teresa began Project Hue, an online chronicle of light-hued Indigenous Peoples through photography and experiences, involving prejudice, their relationship with racism, and lateral violence. Currently, Teresa is collaborating with artist, Nicole Bauberger, in creating Raven-inspired sculptural works from tire remnants found on the side of the Alaska Highway. The two received a Canada Council for the Arts Creating, Knowing, and Sharing grant which allowed them to begin the project earlier this year.Teresa is a member of the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective and Yukon Arts Society.
Here’s how to contact her
Project Hue: http://www.projectmyhue.wordpress.com/
Scavenging for the Many Faces of Raven: http://www.scavengingforraven.wordpress.com/