Philip Cote, “Noodjmowin” – Moose Deer Point First Nation
Shawnee, Lakota, Potawatomi, Ojibway and Algonquin
Philip Cote is an artist, an educator, a Sundancer, a Pipe Carrier, a Sweat Ceremony leader, and a member of the Eagle Society. A graduate of OCAD University’s Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design in 2015, Philip creates opportunities for teaching methodologies on Indigenous symbolism, language, knowledge, and history. His teaching philosophy comes from his personal experience of Active Participation and experiential learning through working as Indigenous knowledge and wisdom keeper, whether it be through ceremonies, sharing oral stories, or observations through land-based pedagogy. He has been involved in Indigenous cultural practice for most of his life and this has led him to recognize that Indigenous people’s identity and language are directly linked to their relationships to land and to one another.
Drawing on insights from Indigenous Studies, anti-colonial theory, oral history, and grassroots Indigenous social justice movements such as Idle No More and Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, he employs figurative painting and digital design techniques to create visual stories that challenge colonial discourses, narratives, and misrepresentations, and create moments for the discussion of under-recognized Indigenous knowledge, history, and epistemology. Philip has created public artworks for the Mississauga’s of the New Credit First Nation (Kiinwin Dabaadjmowin “Our Story”, a 1000 square foot mural), Fort York National Historic Site (Niinwin Dabaadjmowin “We Are Talking”, a 20 panel, 80 foot mural), and the City of Toronto (The Nindinawemaaganidok “All My Relations”, a 1600 square foot mural). He has shared his knowledge with numerous institutions from York University, the Art Gallery of Ontario, University of Toronto, Ryerson University, OCAD University and the TDSB through their Aboriginal Education Center. Philip is also a tour guide with First Story, in which he provides a teaching about the Indigenous history of Toronto going as far back as 13,500 years ago.