Depictions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis people can be found in churches and other buildings throughout Canada, but you have to look carefully to find them. From the 1890s, Canadian and European artists would sometimes include Indigenous figures in religious or historical scenes. While many of these scenes reflect a colonial perspective, others embody the brotherly inclusiveness of Christian belief. Noble First Nations figures have long featured in the crests of Montreal, Toronto and several provinces.
The colonial narrative was shattered in the 1960s when Indigenous artists began to create stained glass in Roman Catholic and Anglican churches, both on and off Reserves. We hope to publish many more photos of windows by Salish, Cree, Mohawk, Métis and Inuit artists when appropriate funding and scholarship becomes available.