Born in Kahnawa:ke Mohawk Territory, Skawennati creates Indigenous virtual environments addressing history, the future and change. Teiakwanahstahsontéhrha’ | We Extend the Rafters frames the machinima The Peacemaker Returns, a futuristic saga set in 3025, yet firmly rooted in the ancestral Haudenosaunee confederation story. This machinima is an animation-style film produced on the virtual reality platform Second Life. The Peacemaker Returns was designed specifically for children aged 5 to 11 but visitors of all ages are invited to explore traditions and imagine the world of tomorrow in this “museum of the future.”
The bilingual title of the exhibition—in Kanien’kéha (Mohawk) and in English—refers to the action of “extending the rafters” of a longhouse. These traditional Indigenous structures would be lengthened to make room for new generations or even other families. The artist chose this title to encompass the broader notion of acceptance and inclusion of differences, in the spirit of Respect, Unity and Peace.