Nathalie Bertin is a multi-disciplinary artist from Toronto, Ontario, Canada with documented roots in Michilimackinac & Nipissing. She is of Métis, French, Anishinaabe and Omàmiwininiwak (a.k.a. Algonquin) ancestry. Bertin is a member of the Waawaashkeshi (Deer Clan). Bertin’s current body of work focuses on positive images of indigenous people as a means of confronting their romanticized depictions as seen throughout art history. She focuses especially on the women role models who have had an impact on her. Her aim is to present a different view of indigenous people—one that is positive, powerful, knowledgeable, gentle and kind.
Several of Bertin’s projects are also inspired by traditional storytelling. In 2018, Bertin was awarded an Ontario Arts Council project grant for the creation of a series of beaded “Moccushions©” that interpret traditional stories for future generations. The project led to her self-publishing her bilingual book “Loup Garou, Mocassins and Metis Folklore / Loup Garou, moccasins et folklore metis” in 2020. The project is scheduled for exhibition in 2021 and 2022.
In her commitment to community, Nathalie Bertin also spends time working in education as a visiting artist and knowledge keeper. In 2019, she collaborated with Beausoleil First Nation and Springwater Provincial Park to create an art installation that would serve as a catalyst for teachings of indigenous ways of knowing. Bertin also visits many schools in several Anglophone and Francophone boards across the province to deliver a variety of workshops on Metis arts. Since 2017, she has also become a community partner and co-presenter in “First Nations and Métis Math Voices Project” (Dr. Ruth Beatty, Lakehead University), “Indigenous Education and Mathematics Conference” (Dr. Ruth Beatty, Lakehead University) and “Culturally Responsive Math, First Nations & Metis Math Voices” (Nelson PL Series Winter 2020). Bertin also created “Project: Odemin” as a means of fundraising for educational community project that need assistance getting off the ground.
In addition to many book illustration and commercial art projects, Nathalie Bertin’s art can also be found in collections of the Government of Manitoba, Government of Alberta, corporate organizations and private collectors across Canada, the U.S., Europe and Africa.