100 Beautiful POC – Day 3

Jay Odjick

[3] Jay Odjick Jay Odjick is a writer, artist, graphic novelist, and television producer from the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg Algonquin First Nation in Quebec. He is the author and artist of “Kagagi: The Raven,” a graphic novel series, and an executive producer on the television series of the same name, based on his graphic novels. He also serves as character designer and lead writer for the show, which began airing on Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN) in Canada on October 5, 2014. The titular character Kagagi is loosely based on stories of the “Raven” from the Anishinaabe and the storyline springboards off of the Algonquin legend of Windigo, the story of an evil creature with the power to possess humans and turn them into cannibals. The television series ranks among the only creator owned comics to be adapted for television and is in part used to teach Anishinaabe culture and language. In fact, Odjick has been cited for his use of graphic novels and television as modern mediums to facilitate the retention of the Anishinaabe language. Odjick’s work in the comics industry represents a growing trend by Native American writers, artists, and graphic novelists to create relevant heroes that are not confined to the tropes associated with dated stereotypes.

His work has also been featured in MOONSHOT: The Indigenous Comics Collection (2015), and in the “Super Heroes: Art! Action! Adventure!” Exhibit at the Heard Museum of Indian American Art and History in Phoenix, AZ in 2015. Jay Odjick is also an activist and speaker and has additionally pursued creative endeavors in children’s book illustration, having illustrated seven books published for the first time in Ojibwe, written by author Robert Munsch and has provided illustrations for a reprinting of Clive Barker’s “The Midnight Meat Train.”

For more information on “Kagagi” specifically I’d recommend the following article: http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2015/06/25/native-american-comics-creator-showcase-jay-odjick-and-kagagi-160847

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