Northern Wilds Magazine
Niimi (She Dances, is Home at Hollow Rock), by Sam Zimmerman. | SUBMITTED
Along the ShoreArts

Niimi (She Dances, is Home at Hollow Rock)

I remember the first time I saw a zaangwewemagooday (jingle dress). Home during Gichi-onigamiing (Grand Portage) Rendezvous Days as a teenager, I was captivated by its beauty and power. The jingle dress is a significant part of Ojibwe culture as its dance brings healing. I have always been drawn to its beauty and sound and was envious that it was for women to wear.

After speaking to my cousin, who is a beautiful dancer with an ogichidaa manidoo (warrior spirit); and getting her approval I featured the colors of her own dress in this painting, titled, Niimi (She Dances, is Home at Hollow Rock). As a two-spirted (LGBTQ) Ojibwe artist, Niimi is a figure that I have created that appears in many of my paintings as a way to celebrate the power of my female spirit alongside my male spirit. Niimi (She Dances) is along the shores of Gitchi Gami (Lake Superior) under the biboon (winter) sky dancing for healing under the Minado Giisoonhs (Little Spirit moon). The sound of the jingles echoing across the waters bringing healing. It is my wish for all of you that this painting brings healing and peace to you during the upcoming holiday season. 

My work can be found online on Instagram and Facebook under the name Crane Superior.

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