Gordon Fiddler

Gordon was born in Cochenour in 1958. He is Oji/Cree. His father was from Sandy Lake First Nation his mother from Sioux Lookout, Ontario.

When he was a baby, his father, Samuel, was tragically killed when his boat hit a rock as he was on his way home from Cochenour to McKenzie Island. He had just left the Cochenour Hospital after being treated for an injury at the Cochenour Mine.

Without any means to support herself, Gordon's mother moved to Red Lake where she had two more children. The family was very poor, and Gordon's remembers stealing food from grocery stores and raiding people's gardens to feed his sisters when he was only seven years old. He was placed in a foster home for awhile, and sent to the McIntosh Residential School near Vermillion Bay for a few years. He later moved with his mother to Wawa then to Elliot Lake, where he lives with his wife Barbara and their two sons.

Gordon started painting when he was eight, and made his first sale at ten. His first jobs were painting signs and posters for grocery stores. Encouraged by an elementary school teacher Gertrude Caffe' who recognized his talent. He continued painting throughout his teen and adult years. He credits this teacher, who kept encouraging him over the years, for giving him the confidence to pursue an art career. Eventually, his art evolved to painting traditional Anishinaabe images, and today he makes a comfortable living as a commercial artist. His designs can be found on clothing, blankets, glass etchings, and many different types of arts and crafts. He also paints stunning images on canvas that he sells to Canadian and foreign collectors.

Gordon has had exhibitions in prestigious venues such as the Chateau Laurie in Ottawa, the Canadiana Gallery in Vancouver, and various private and public galleries across the country. His art has also been shown at the Skydome in Toronto, as well as in Germany, Australia and Scotland.

Gordon says his future plan is to teach young people all aspects of Traditional Aboriginal Arts.

No image on these pages may be taken and copied or reproduced in any way, without the written permission from the artist.

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