ORAL HISTORY: WESLEY RILEY

ArtBar +Projects

1873 Granville Street, Halifax, NS.

Wesley Riley is a Black-Mi’kmaw gay man born and raised in Halifax/K’jipuktuk. He is a remarkable memory keeper and storyteller, recalling the past through a constellation of people throughout his life. Through the finest and most vivid details his memories speak volumes not only to the past but also to the deep care he has for those around him. Wesley is interested in recording memory, both in writing and on camera. His partner, who speaks a few times but remains out of frame in this session, is Robin Metcalfe, who is a curator, archivist, writer, and LGBTQ+ activist. Our conversations with the two of them, both recorded and unrecorded, have been nourishing. This intergenerational dialogue has illuminated the past, situated the present in time, and has inspired us to imagine new possible futures.