The artwork of two Mi’kmaq artists from Waycobah First Nation in Nova Scotia was presented to Canadian artist and Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downey Tuesday during an emotional Assembly of First Nations meeting.
Downie was overcome with emotion as he was honoured for his work on reconcilliation during the meeting in Gatineau, Que.
As part of that ceremony, Regional Chief Morley Googoo presented Downie with a painting commissioned by Loretta Gould.
The painting, titled Share our Teachings, depicts Gould’s vision of Downie meeting 12-year-old Ojibway boy Chanie (Charlie) Wenjack.
WATCH: Gord Downie overcome with emotion during AFN ceremony
Chanie Wenjack is the focus of Downie’s most recent solo work, Secret Path — which features a graphic novel, movie and music album that tell the tragic story of the boy who died from exposure and hunger trying make his way home after escaping a residential school in Kenora, Ont.
READ MORE: Gord Downie performs at We Day in Halifax
In addition to the painting, Downie was also given a beaded medallion made by Lillian Googoo of Waycobah, which features his hat that’s become an icon of the recent Tragically Hip Man Machine Poem tour, as well as Secret Path shows.
“Gord’s main objective with the Secret Path project was to create a conversation about Reconciliation that would span generations,” Chief Googoo said in a release.
“I was honoured to present him with Loretta’s beautiful depiction and Lillian’s incredible beadwork medallion both in recognition of his lasting contribution to Reconciliation on behalf of AFN.”
Downie has also partnered with Regional Chief Googoo on the Legacy Room project, which aims to encourage companies to designate special rooms in their buildings for discussing aboriginal issues and Reconcilliation.