Cranmer ('Namgis) is a documentary filmmaker from Alert
Bay, British Columbia. Her works document cultural renewal and
traditional knowledge of First Nations of Canada's North Pacific
Coast. Cranmer has co-produced., written, and directed five documentaries.
T'lina: The Rendering of Wealth received the Best Short
Documentary award at the 1999 American Indian Film Festival. In
1997 Qatuwas: People Gathering Together received on of
the inaugural Northern Canada Aboriginal Production Awards from
Telefilm Canada. She has also produced segments for television
series such as APTN's Creative Native.
Cranmer's first exposure to filmmaking was in 1980 when she was
a student videotaping oral histories of elders for the opening
of the U'Mista Cultural Centre in Alert Bay. In 1987 she was certified
through the Aboriginal Film and Television Program at Capilano
College in North Vancouver, British Columbia. Cranmer is serving
her third term as an elected council member for 'Namgis First
Nation. She belongs to the U'mista Cultural Society and the T'sasala
Cultural Group, which presents, songs, dances, and cultural education
in Alert Bay every summer. She is president of the Indigenous
Arts Service Organization in British Columbia, which programs
indigenous art festivals. Cranmer was a consultant for NMAI's
exhibtion "Listening to Our Ancestors: The Art of Native
Life Along the North Pacific Coast" which opened in February
"I have been involved in film and video for many years.
The inspiration for my work comes from our own people's rich history.
I am a messenger of these stories and have been entrusted with
to bring them to a wider audience. The telling of our stories
from our perspective and giving voice to our communities is critical.
I feel fortunate to be able to live the history of our people
through the documentaries I make. I get my source of strength
from my community and most importantly from my family. They give
me a strong sense of identity."
Screened by NMAI
Image credits: Barb
Cranmer - courtesy of Lou Stancari, NMAI