Barry Ace is a practicing visual artist and currently lives in Ottawa, Canada. He is a band member of M'Chigeeng First Nation, Manitoulin Island, Ontario, Canada. His mixed media, assemblage and textile works explore various aspects of cultural continuity and the confluence of the historical and contemporary.
Drawing inspiration from multiple facets of traditional Anishinaabeg (Odawa) culture gathered from historical sources, traditional knowledge, found objects and cultural research, Ace creates objects and imagery that utilize many traditional forms and motifs. By disrupting the reading of these works with the introduction of other elements, Ace endeavours to create a convergence of the historical and contemporary. He states, "My textile and paper works replicate traditional Great Lakes' floral motifs often sourced from reclaimed and salvaged electronic schematics and circuitry (capacitors and resistors) that act as metaphors for cultural continuity (antithesis of stasis), bridging the past with the present and the future. In doing so, my work intentionally integrates traditional cultural art practices, such as beadwork, which is juxtaposed against contemporary ephemera, breaking new ground as a distinct genre of contemporary indigenous abstraction."