Moving Images Distribution is located on the traditional, ancestral, unceded and occupied territory of the Coast Salish peoples - xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ílwətaʔɬ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations - commonly known as Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Our roots lie within the independent film and video community. During the 1970s, a group of talented filmmakers began developing ways to increase the profile of their work. Their vision resulted in the formation of Canadian Filmmakers Distribution West which changed its name to Moving Images Distribution in 1994. Since our beginnings in 1979, we've worked to connect audiences with innovative works by some of Canada's internationally acclaimed media artists working in experimental, documentary, animation, short fiction and personal narrative.
“Tribal Journey, Part 2: Nala Winds” SAMAQAN Season 3 Episode 33
What began with the Heiltsuk First Nation's building of a canoe, the first in over 150 years, and paddling it to Vancouver for EXPO '86 has become a movement reviving the ocean-going canoe tradition on the West Coast. In 1993, the Heiltsuk's Qatuwas Festival journey saw 14 canoes paddle to Bella Bella. Enthusiasm has grown and now there are annual tribal journeys in the Pacific Northwest. In the spirit of ‘qatuwas’ which means ‘people gathering together’, these tribal journeys bring together people of all ages and reconnect them on the water with the traditional ways of their ancestors. The journeys can take several weeks and build fortitude, stamina, identity and self-esteem for participants. “Nala Winds” is the canoe family from the Heiltsuk First Nation of Bella Bella. Organizers Frank and Kathy Brown meet in the Cowichan gymnasium to launch their journey out of Cowichan Bay. Frank explains that the protocol of always asking for permission to come ashore after a day of paddling is an acknowledgement of title of the land and of the people whose waters they are passing through. The word ‘nala’ means ‘weather’ in the Heiltsuk language, something essential to respect on these journeys. It also is an acronym for navigating all life's adventures, and these journeys build skills for that. Kathy Brown covers the logistics of a ground crew that follows the route of the paddlers, managing access to food and shelter. A tribal journey belongs to everyone who participates, bringing together people of all ages through a common heritage of the ocean-going canoe.
This documentary from “SAMAQAN: Water Stories” Series 3, looks deeper at water's role in culture, spirituality and life itself for North America's First Nations people.
Directed by: Marianne Jones, Jeff Bear
Produced by: Marianne Jones, Kristy Assu, Jeff Bear