Sam Zimmerman’s design was selected as one of the top 10 submissions for Tanka Fund’s Return blanket contest with Eighth Generation.
He received a cash prize, supported by the Windrose Fund, and shared this statement:
When I learned of a blanket design call for art with the theme of “The Return of the Buffalo,” I began to ponder the medicine and strength of bizhiki / buffalo. This piece was designed to reflect and capture the medicine of the white bizhiki / buffalo with the phases of the moon reflecting the passage of time, the campfire representing family gatherings and seven grandfather teachings, with 365 stars above in the sky, the full moon being the medicine wheel. I wanted anyone who wraps themselves in it — to carry the bizhiki / buffalo medicine with them.
Title: Bizhiki / Buffalo Carries the Medicine
Sam Zimmerman (Grand Portage Band of Ojibwe, Direct Descendant) received his Bachelors of Fine Arts in Studio Art from the Rochester Institute of Technology. His work explores his Ojibwe heritage, his learnings and experiences in nature upon his return to the Grand Portage reservation while preserving shared oral histories, reimagining the symbolism of the clan animals while incorporating the natural landscape of Lake Superior’s North Shore. He has recently completed the illustration of bilingual Ojibwemowin/English children’s books for the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa schools. He has recently completed his first Ojibwemowin/English bilingual book, a collection of paintings and stories from his first year of creating along the northern shore of Lake Superior, titled: Following My Spirit Home, published by Black Bear and Blueberries Publishing, a Native-owned publishing company.