Cyril Assiniboine, a Saulteaux born in 1959 on the Long Plain First Nation community near Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, dramatically captures the essence of the powwow dancer and the elaborate regalia of his culture.
Since 1982 the artist has been associated with The Wah-sa gallery, which gave him his first one-artist show in 1983. In 1997 the gallery published the first Assiniboine limited editions, Dog Soldier and To the Beat of the Drum, followed by a series of four prints representing various dance styles (Hoop, Jingle, etc.). The artist’s print, High Steppin’, was commissioned by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1998 and, in 1999, the Health Sciences centre commissioned Assiniboine’s Honing the Gift to commemorate the contribution of John Kim Bell, Aboriginal composer and head of the National Aboriginal Achievements Award Foundation.
Cyril himself is a dancer, having performed in Canada, the United States, and, in 1994, at a sponsored exchange in Sweden.